KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

New Study Quantifies Impact Of ER Closures On Neighborhoods

The study, which appeared in Health Affairs, focused on California and is thought to be the first of its kind to examine the impact of emergency department closures on the quality of patient care.

Los Angeles Times: Study: Emergency Room Closures Can Be Deadly For Area’s Residents
It stands to reason that when a hospital emergency room closes, people in the surrounding neighborhood suffer. But how much? A new study quantifies the impact in California, finding that patients affected by ER closures were 5% more likely to die after being admitted to a hospital than were patients who didn’t lose an ER in their neighborhood (Kaplan, 8/4).

Kaiser Health News: Capsules: Study: ER Closures Raise Death Rates At Nearby Hospital
Emergency patients who are admitted to the hospital are at greater risk of dying if another emergency room at a hospital nearby has closed its doors, a new study of California hospitals has found. The analysis is believed to be the first to examine the impact that emergency department closures have on the quality of patient care at other hospitals within the same service area (Rabin, 8/4). 

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