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Area Hospitals Try More Patient-Friendly ER Approaches

(File photo: the emergency entrance of Cooper Medical Center)

(File photo: the emergency entrance of Cooper Medical Center)

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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – What’s the first thing that comes to mind for most people when thinking about a hospital emergency room? The waiting.

But now, hospitals here and around the country are trying to change that.

Some hospitals now post their average emergency room wait times on their websites. Others let you fill out the paperwork in advance, to speed up service.

And some, including Cooper University Hospital in Camden, separate the cases into categories.

Dr. Michael Chansky, chief of emergency medicine at Cooper, says his ER has four distinct areas to speed up service.

“A separate pediatric emergency department, a trauma receiving area, a fast track or walk-in area, and the regular medical emergency department.”

According to Dr. Chansky, a hospital receives up to 50 percent of its admissions from the emergency room, so taking care of patients quickly — so they will come back in a subsequent emergency if necessary — just makes good business sense.

Reported by Lynne Adkins, KYW Newsradio 1060.

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