J Korean Soc Emerg Med.  2016 Oct;27(5):442-449. 10.0000/jksem.2016.27.5.442.

Analysis of Emergency Department Utilization Rate by Region, Emergency Medical Center, and Hospital Type

Affiliations
  • 1Department of Emergency Medicine, Chonnam National University Medical School, Gwangju, Korea. magicwizard2@hanmail.net
  • 2National Emergency Medical Center, National Medical Center, Seoul, Korea.

Abstract

PURPOSE
Overcrowding in urban emergency departments (EDs) while a decline in rural EDs due to mismatch of supply and demand of emergency medical resources are still issues to date. Therefore, this study analyzed the current characteristics and reality of bed utilization in the EDs of Korea.
METHODS
Real-time availability of bed information was obtained from the emergency medical resource information system. The data were extracted for 4 weeks every 3 months, from April 2014 to January 2015. We analyzed the emergency department utilization (EDU) rate of emergency medical centers and hospitals based in 16 provinces in Korea.
RESULTS
A total of 14,889,750 data were included. The total EDU rate was 20.0% (9.1-43.9%). The EDU rate was 66.7% (40.0-95.0%) for regional emergency medical centers (REMC), 33.3% (15.0-63.3%) for local emergency medical centers (LEMC), 11.1% (0.0-30.0%) for local emergency medical agencies (LEMA). The EDU rate was 71.4.0% (50.0.0-96.7.0%) for tertiary general hospitals (TGH), 20.0% (10.0-36.8%) for general hospitals (GH), and 10.0% (0-20.0%) for hospital & medical centers (HMC). The REMC EDU rate was high in Seoul and Jeonbuk, and low in Jeonnam and Gyeongbuk. The LEMC utilization rate was high in Daegu and Jeonbuk. The LEMA utilization rate was high in Daegu and Ulsan. Moreover, despite the same ED type, the EDU rate of high degree hospitals was higher.
CONCLUSION
The EDU rate differed by region, emergency medical center, and hospital type. We should consider investing in appropriate personnel and emergency medical resources in places with suboptimal EDU rate.

Keyword

Emergency department; Health resources; Utilization

MeSH Terms

Daegu
Emergencies*
Emergency Service, Hospital*
Gyeongsangbuk-do
Health Resources
Hospitals, General
Information Systems
Jeollabuk-do
Jeollanam-do
Korea
Seoul
Ulsan
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