Expanding the Role of Emergency Medical Services

A new project under way at the Mount Sinai Health System aims to analyze and expand the role of the nation’s emergency medical services (EMS) to serve as a vital link in a highly coordinated system focused on the acute medical needs of the community.

The project, titled “Promoting Innovations in Emergency Medical Services,” is a collaborative effort between Mount Sinai and the UC San Diego Health System. Backed by a $225,000 grant from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and the U.S. Departments of Homeland Security and Health and Human Services, the project seeks to eliminate the regulatory, financial, technological, and training barriers that have stood in the way of a meaningful overhaul of the nation’s emergency medical services. Read more

Hospitals Put Pharmacists in the ER to Cut Medication Errors

The NPR story noted: “In the emergency department at Children’s Medical Center in Dallas, pharmacists who specialize in emergency medicine review each medication to make sure it’s the right one in the right dose. It’s part of the hospital’s efforts to cut down on medication errors and dangerous drug interactions, which contribute to more than 7,000 deaths across the country each year.”

“Medication errors can be caused by something as simple as bad handwriting, confusion between drugs with similar names, poor packaging design or confusion between metric or other dosing units, according to the Food and Drug Administration. But they’re often due to a combination of factors, which makes them harder to prevent.” Read more

Becoming a Health Advocate for your Children

While the new concept of a Geriatric Emergency Department is garnering attention recently, Mount Sinai’s Pediatric Emergency Department continues its tradition of innovation and excellence in caring for children during the most stressful of times.

Recent investments include staffing Child Life Specialists, whose role is to advocate for patient care and act as a liaison between patients, families and care providers.

Also, Pediatric Emergency physician Dr. Audrey Paul has spearheaded a community outreach, entitled, “How to Navigate an Emergency Room Visit with your Child.”  This innovative bilingual workshop was the first in a series of parent education initiatives for parents in low-income and underserved communities on preparing for pediatric emergencies. The project began at Little Sisters of the Assumption and will expand to additional areas to reach more families in underserved communities.

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