Many have been saying for quite some time that the practice of emergency medicine should evolve to widely transcend the traditional “bricks and mortar” of hospital-based emergency departents. Board-certified emergency physicians should be seen as physicians to all patients with acute, undifferentiated illness or injury in any setting. We believe in exploring opportunities for the practice of emergency medicine within ED-based ICUs, free-standing emergency departments, hospital satellite departments, and physician-owned hospitals, particularly in rural areas. Coupled with the evolving physical and digital infrastructure to predict outcomes and ensure follow-up care, the time is right to broaden our practice.
- Expand the reach of emergency medicine to ensure that no community is left behind
With strong diversity of practice among our members, ACEP recognizes the value of collaborative practice models between academic and rural/community sites to support mutual appreciation of different practice challenges and reduce feelings of isolation of among rural emergency physicians. Furthering the development of blended practice models could meet the needs of the emergency physician, the community, and the hospital while enhancing quality and reducing geographic disparities of care.
In sum, these considerations are a starting point to outline pressing issues and potential solutions proposed to date. Very importantly, your perspectives and approaches are critical to these ongoing deliberations. Differing opinions are still needed and welcomed, as it is vital all consequences, whether intended and unintended, are considered in advance. Feedback, via email or on a discussion forum, can be provided at acep.org/workforce.
ACEP remains dedicated to working together with those who share our commitment to identify data-driven solutions that promote both patient safety and emergency physician opportunities.