Friday, April 28, 2006

The doctor will see you now

There's no flu emergency now. No heat wave. Just normal times. What's "normal" in the Emergency Department?

CDC has just reported that 10% of emergent cases (patients who should be seen in less than 15 minutes after arrival in the Emergency Department) and 20% of urgent cases (should be seen in under an hour) had waiting times of more than an hour to see a doctor. These two categories constitute half of all ED visits.

And if you are black or Hispanic you were even more likely to wait:

If this is "normal," what do you think a flu pandemic will be like at your friendly neighborhood Emergency Department?