Author(s): Houghton A, Hopkins A
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Abstract The rising number of emergency admissions and the increasing specialisation of medicine sometimes cause problems in the organisation of care for patients admitted as emergencies to medical beds. A multidisciplinary working group from general practice and the hospital sector identified five main areas in which problems occurred-communication, appropriateness of referral, finding beds, waiting by patients, and the organisation of clinical care. Guidelines and standards were suggested. We then carried out an audit of acute care in 42 hospitals with 400 or more acute beds. The most significant problems that emerged were the suboptimal involvement of consultants in acute care, the frequent lack of appropriateness of the admitting specialty to the patient's condition, and confusion about policies for admitting elderly patients.
This article was published in J R Coll Physicians Lond
and referenced in Journal of Clinical Research & Bioethics