Costs of Emergency Care

Main Points

  • Emergency care represents less than 2 percent of the nation’s $2.4 trillion in health care expenditures while covering 136 million people a year.
  • Emergency departments are open 24 hours a day and provide “one-stop shopping” with all the hospital’s resources – such as diagnostic testing and consultation by other medical specialists – in one place.
  • The most pressing economic issue in emergency medicine is uncompensated care: the lack of adequate reimbursement for emergency medical care has led to the closure of hundreds of emergency departments.
  • Emergency departments are critical to our communities and must be adequately funded. 

Costs of Emergency Care Fact Sheet

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