Send to

Choose Destination
Pediatr Emerg Care. 2014 Sep;30(9):613-6. doi: 10.1097/PEC.0000000000000207.

Impact of follow-up calls from the pediatric emergency department on return visits within 72 hours: a randomized controlled trial.

Author information

From the Pediatric Research in Emergency Therapeutics (PRETx) Program, Division of Pediatric Emergency Medicine, Department of Pediatrics, University of British Columbia, Child and Family Research Institute (CFRI), and British Columbia Children's Hospital, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.



We compare the rate of return to the emergency department (ED) within 72 hours between families of children receiving a follow-up telephone call by a non-health care provider asking about the child's well-being 12 hours after their visit to the ED and families not receiving a follow-up call.


This was a prospective, randomized study in which we conducted a follow-up call starting at 12 hours after discharge from the ED versus no call for follow-up. At 96 hours after discharge, we contacted all recruited families. We recorded the rate of return to the ED within 72 hours of discharge.


Of 371 families in the data analysis, 46% were in the study group, and 55.5% were male patients. Mean age was 5.7 years. The outcome measure was found to be in contrary to our hypothesis. We found return visits to the ED in 24 (14%) of the children in the study group compared with only 14 (7%) in the control group (P < 0.03). All other parameters were not statistically different between the groups.


Emergency departments practicing follow-up calls by non-health care providers should consider a forecasted increase in return rates.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wolters Kluwer
Loading ...
Support Center