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J Accid Emerg Med. 2000 Sep;17(5):351-4.

Regular attenders to the accident and emergency department.

Author information

  • 1Accident and Emergency Department, Hull Royal Infirmary. rlynch@tinyworld.co.uk

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

To examine the profile of regular attenders to an accident and emergency (A&E) department, and to estimate the percentage of the overall departmental workload attributed to this group of patients, together with the resultant cost to the department of these attendances.

METHODS:

A retrospective study of regular attenders to the A&E department at Hull Royal Infirmary was conducted between 1 January 1998 and 30 June 1998. The information gathered included age, sex, marital status, accommodation, investigations performed, concurrent alcohol use, presenting complaints and disposal.

RESULTS:

The A&E department at Hull Royal Infirmary sees approximately 87 000 new patients per year. Forty regular attenders presented 475 times in six months accounting for 1.1% of the departmental workload. The most common presenting complaints were overdose (27.4%), minor injuries (19%), alcohol intoxication (14%) and seizures (10.5%). Eighty per cent of patients were single and 7.5% were of no fixed abode. A total of 191 admissions resulted and the cost to the department for investigations performed was between ł2709.59 and ł3739.85. The cost of inhospital admissions was in excess of ł34000.

CONCLUSION:

Improved management of these patients together with a reduction in their alcohol intake may lead to a significant reduction in both workload for accident departments and hospitals and in the number of regular attenders.

PMID:
11005407
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC1725468
Free PMC Article
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