Evaluating Emergency Room Utilization of Mobile Mental Health Patients: A Correlational Retrospective Analysis
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Background: Current literature indicates that mobile health clinics have the potential to significantly reduce avoidable ED visits by providing easily accessible care. Theoretical Framework: Pender’s Health Promotion Model guided the project design and the interpretation of project results and outcomes. Methods: This Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) project replicated a previous retrospective chart review pilot study conducted with 43 MMHC patients. Health records from 265 MMHC patients were retrospectively reviewed to determine the number of ED visits eight months prior and eight months following admission to the MMHC. Descriptive statistics were used to analyze demographic data. Paired t-tests were used to determine differences in ED visits both pre and post admission to the MMHC. Results: Findings demonstrated that patients admitted to the MMHC had a significant reduction (p < .05) in ED utilization. There was also a decrease in mean ED visits in patients who received combined treatment, which included medication management and counseling. Conclusion: Use of the MMHC is effective for reducing psychiatric patient ED overutilization, reducing Medicaid costs, and preventing patient destabilization.