Introduction: Emergency departments (ED) function as a health and social safety net, regularly taking care of patients with high social risk and need. Few studies have examined ED-based interventions for social risk and need. Methods: Focusing on ED-based interventions, we identified initial research gaps and priorities in the ED using a literature review, topic expert feedback, and consensus-building. Research gaps and priorities were further refined based on moderated, scripted discussions and survey feedback during the 2021 SAEM Consensus Conference. Using these methods, we derived six priorities based on three identified gaps in ED-based social risks and needs interventions: 1) assessment of ED-based interventions; 2) intervention implementation in the ED environment; and 3) intercommunication between patients, EDs, and medical and social systems. Results: Using these methods, we derived six priorities based on three identified gaps in ED-based social risks and needs interventions: 1) assessment of ED-based interventions, 2) intervention implementation in the ED environment, and 3) intercommunication between patients, EDs, and medical and social systems. Assessing intervention effectiveness through patient-centered outcome and risk reduction measures should be high priorities in the future. Also noted was the need to study methods of integrating interventions into the ED environment and to increase collaboration between EDs and their larger health systems, community partners, social services, and local government. Conclusion: The identified research gaps and priorities offer guidance for future work to establish effective interventions and build relationships with community health and social systems to address social risks and needs, thereby improving the health of our patients.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Emergency Medicine