Title

Should hospital emergency departments be used as revenue streams despite needs to curb overutilization?

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

3-1-2019

Abstract

©2019 American Medical Association. This case asks how a hospital should balance patients' health needs with its financial bottom line regarding emergency department utilization. Should hospitals engage in proactive population health initiatives if they result in decreased revenue from their emergency departments? Which values should guide their thinking about this question? Drawing upon emerging legal and moral consensus about hospitals' obligations to their surrounding communities, this commentary argues that treating emergency departments purely as revenue streams violates both legal and moral standards.

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