Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Ann Emerg Med. 2013 Nov;62(5):498-505.e3. doi: 10.1016/j.annemergmed.2013.03.029. Epub 2013 Apr 24.

Owning the cost of emergency medicine: beyond 2%.

Author information

  • 1Department of Emergency Medicine, Rhode Island Hospital, and the Alpert Medical School of Brown University, Providence, RI. Electronic address:


This article evaluates current evidence on the cost of emergency care. First, we reviewed data from national data sets and found that aggregate spending on emergency care is 5% to 6% of national health expenditures but could be as high as 10%. These figures are significantly higher than those previously published. Second, we reviewed the literature on economic models of the cost of emergency care and found that the results are inconclusive and incomplete. As an alternative, we discussed activity-based cost accounting and concluded that it is a promising research methodology for emergency medicine. We conclude by advocating for a strategy to demonstrate the value and strategic importance of emergency medicine rather than minimizing its role in national health care costs.

Copyright © 2013 American College of Emergency Physicians. Published by Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Elsevier Science
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk