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Follow-up contact means more satisfied ED patients

NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted March 11, 2013

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Physicians who contact emergency department patients by phone or email within three days get higher patient satisfaction scores, says a study posted online Feb. 27 in Annals of Emergency Medicine.

Forty-two emergency physicians at two community EDs took turns contacting or not contacting their patients during a two-month period. When the physicians followed up with 348 patients to check on their status after discharge, they got an average satisfaction score of 87.7%. When the physicians took the usual course of not contacting an additional 1,002 ED patients, their average score was 79.4%.

Higher scores not only mean more satisfied patients, but better patient compliance with ED instructions and reduced medical liability risk, said the study (link).

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