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The Urgent Care Association (UCA) is the premier resource for urgent care industry news, information and statistics.

[Members of the media wishing to speak with an industry spokesperson should contact the account executives at L.C. Williams and Associates, at ucamedia@lcwa.com.]

Study shows impact of urgent care centers on nonemergent ED usage

Author: Suzanne Flynn/Tuesday, January 15, 2019/Categories: Industry News

Study led by Dr. Lindsay Allen of West Virginia University and published by National Bureau of Economic Research
Results covered in an article by Healthcare Dive

Dive Brief:

  • A new study suggests urgent care centers are impacting the use of emergency departments for minor illnesses and injuries, but only in locations with multiple UCCs.
  • The multistate study led by Dr. Lindsay Allen of West Virginia University and published by the National Bureau of Economic Research compared nonemergent ED use when UCCs were open and closed. The results showed a 1.4% uptick in ED visits after the last center in an area closed for the day — or about 2.4 million ED visits annually. The effect was limited to privately insured patients, the primary targets of UCCs.
  • The study — the first to measure the effect of UCCs on ED use, according to the researchers — could inform strategies to reduce use of expensive ED services and help rein in costs.



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