Almost 137 million Americans visit emergency departments every year, which is an extremely costly route to health care. Overcrowding is a widespread problem, yet a high percentage of people seek out urgent care for nonurgent needs because they have no other place to go. At the same time, telemedicine — such as telephone apps that can provide ultrasound — allows some patients to be treated without travelling to emergency facilities and others to get faster care once they arrive. How can we provide the best possible emergency services, but only when they are truly needed?
- 2019 Health