Emergency Department Overcrowding and Access Block Position Statement

CAEP is pleased to announce the release of their new position statement on Emergency Department Overcrowding and Access Block. Please click on the link below to access the document. Anyone with any questions regarding the position statement should contact CAEP Manager of Communications and Marketing, Lee Arbon at 613.523.3343 ext 15 or larbon@caep.ca

Emergency Department Overcrowding and
Access Block Position Statement

English French

Key Potential Solutions Highlighted within the Paper include:

  • Establishing national benchmarks for key intervals in the Emergency Department experience and reporting them publicly:
  • Linking ED length of stay (ED LOS) benchmarks to incentives and infrastructure investment;
  • Mandate a national ED repository of visit data;

Other Key points From EDOC;

  • Overcrowding leads to Access Block for newly arriving patients needing emergency care. (eg Brian Sinclair case for dramatic example);
  • Multiple LARGE studies from MULTIPLE countries show increased numbers of patients may die or require a second ED visit within a week of their first if they are seen in an ED at a time of crowding;
  • Thus ED crowding is not just an issue of patient convenience, or even of simple comfort, it constitutes a Public Health crisis;
  • ED’s cannot fix their crowding problem alone, they are dependent on hospital systems and coordination with other major system players, therefore it requires a coordinated approach by hospitals and by government to address this issue;
  • Multiple jurisdictions and regions (including the UK and Ontario) have made significant improvements to access to ED care in the last 10 years, therefore there are blueprints for change;
  • With the aging population and average life expectancy increasing, patients requiring Alternate Level of Care (ALC) are contributing to access block to acute care beds – this problem continues to increase annually;
  • There is NO excuse for continued inaction in Canada.

November 18, 2013