Optimal Older Adult Emergency Care: Introducing Multidisciplinary Geriatric Emergency Department Guidelines from the American College of Emergency Physicians, American Geriatrics Society, Emergency Nurses Association, and Society for Academic Emergency Medicine

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Abstract

In the United States and around the world, effective, efficient, and reliable strategies to provide emergency care to aging adults is challenging crowded emergency departments (EDs) and strained healthcare systems. In response, geriatric emergency medicine clinicians, educators, and researchers collaborated with the American College of Emergency Physicians, American Geriatrics Society, Emergency Nurses Association, and Society for Academic Emergency Medicine to develop guidelines intended to improve ED geriatric care by enhancing expertise, educational, and quality improvement expectations, equipment, policies, and protocols. These Geriatric Emergency Department Guidelines represent the first formal society-led attempt to characterize the essential attributes of the geriatric ED and received formal approval from the boards of directors of each of the four societies in 2013 and 2014. This article is intended to introduce emergency medicine and geriatric healthcare providers to the guidelines while providing recommendations for continued refinement of these proposals through educational dissemination, formal effectiveness evaluations, cost-effectiveness studies, and eventually institutional credentialing.

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