Balancing vision with pragmatism: The geriatric emergency department guidelines-realistic expectations from emergency medicine and geriatric medicine

Richard D. Shih, Christopher R. Carpenter, Vaishal Tolia, Ellen F. Binder, Joseph G. Ouslander

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

In 2014 the Geriatric Emergency Department (GED) Guidelines were published and endorsed by four major medical organizations. The multidisciplinary GED Guidelines characterize the complex needs of the older emergency department (ED) patient and current best practices with the goal of promoting more cost-effective and patient-centered care. The recommendations are extensive and the vast majority of EDs then and now do not have either the resources nor hospital administrative support to provide this additional service. At the 2021 American Academy of Emergency Medicine's Scientific Assembly, a panel of emergency medicine physicians and geriatricians discussed the GED Guidelines and the current realities of EDs' capacity to provide best practice and guideline recommended care of GED patients. This article is a synthesis of the panel's presentation and discussion. With the substantial challenges in providing guideline recommended care in EDs, this article will explore three high impact GED clinical conditions to highlight guideline recommendations, challenges and opportunities, and discuss realistically achievable expectations for non-Geriatric ED accredited institutions. In 2014 the Geriatric Emergency Department Guidelines were published describing the current best practices for geriatric ED patients. Unfortunately, the vast majority of EDs worldwide do not provide the level of service recommended by the GED guidelines. The GED Guidelines can best be termed aspirational for U.S. EDs at the present time.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1368-1373
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of the American Geriatrics Society
Volume70
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2022

Keywords

  • Geriatric Emergency Department Guidelines
  • delirium
  • falls
  • polypharmacy

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