Its estimated americans made one-hundred-14-million visits to the emergency room in the past year.
That's a 26-percent increase.
In Nevada because of our population growth, lack of insurance coverage for many, and problems for medicare patients gaining access to primary care physicians, emergency rooms are overloaded.
Dr. John Swanson is the Nevada Chapter President of the American College of Emergency Physicians. "Tthe more patients that are left in the er the less that they get to see the doctor, the less they get to see the nurses , the less they get to see the folks that are taking care of them. And the folks that are taking care of them are really, realistically spread too thin."
Dr. Swanson says the report is important information not only for Nevadans concerned about their personnel health care, but also how this care will play in responding to a community wide disaster or terrorist attack.
The Report card gives Nevada an "F" for Quality Care and Patient Safety.
ACEP says our state earned such a grade because we have the worst nursing shortage in the nation, the low number or hospital-staffed beds, and too few emergency departments statewide.
Because these limited number of emergency departments are overcrowded...the state received a D-plus for emergency care access.
Emergency care in Nevada earned a D- for public health and safety because of alcohol-related fatalities as a percentage of all traffic fatalities and the number of children 19-35 months who are not appropriately immunized.
On the upside, Nevada received one of the highest scores, an A-minus for its medical liability environment.
That was in part due to 2004 elections where voters agreed to place caps on pain and suffering damages awarded in medical malpractice cases.
However that A-minue grade may have been awarded erroneously by the American College of Emergency Physicians. It gave point to our state for having a pretrial medical screening panel. The panel determined if medical malpractice cases had merit before they went forward in the legal system. That screening panel was abolished by lawmakers in 2003 during a special session involving malpractice.