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A panel of emergency medicine (EM) leaders endeavoured to define the key elements of leadership and its models, as well as to formulate consensus recommendations to build and strengthen academic leadership in the Canadian EM community in the areas of mentorship, education, and resources.
The expert panel comprised EM leaders from across Canada and met regularly by teleconference over the course of 9 months. From the breadth of backgrounds and experience, as well as a literature review and the development of a leadership video series, broad themes for recommendations around the building and strengthening of EM leadership were presented at the CAEP 2015 Academic Symposium held in Edmonton, Alberta. Feedback from the attendees (about 80 emergency physicians interested in leadership) was sought. Subsequently, draft recommendations were developed by the panel through attendee feedback, further review of the leadership video series, and expert opinion. The recommendations were distributed to the CAEP Academic Section for further feedback and updated by consensus of the expert panel.
The methods informed the panel who framed recommendations around four themes: 1) leadership preparation and training, 2) self-reflection/emotional intelligence, 3) academic leadership skills, and 4) gender balance in academic EM leadership. The recommendations aimed to support and nurture the next generation of academic EM leaders in Canada and included leadership mentors, availability of formal educational courses/programs in leadership, self-directed education of aspiring leaders, creation of a Canadian subgroup with the AACEM/SAEM Chair Development Program, and gender balance in leadership roles.
These recommendations serve as a roadmap for all EM leaders (and aspiring leaders) to build on their success, inspire their colleagues, and foster the next generation of Canadian EM academic leaders.
We compared the appropriateness of visits to a pediatric emergency department (ED) by provincial telephone health line–referral, by self- or parent-referral, and by physician-referral.
A cohort of patients younger than 18 years of age who presented to a pediatric ED during any of four 1-week study periods were prospectively enrolled. The cohort consisted of all patients who were referred to the ED by a provincial telephone health line or by a physician. For each patient referred by the health line, the next patient who was self- or parent-referred was also enrolled. The primary outcome was visit appropriateness, which was determined using previously published explicit criteria. Secondary outcomes included the treating physician's view of appropriateness, disposition (hospital admission or discharge), treatment, investigations and the length of stay in the ED.
Of the 578 patients who were enrolled, 129 were referred from the health line, 102 were either self- or parent-referred, and 347 were physician-referred. Groups were similar at baseline for sex, but health line–referred patients were significantly younger. Using explicitly set criteria, there was no significant difference in visit appropriateness among the health line–referrals (66%), the self- or parent-referrals (77%) and the physician-referrals (73%) (p = 0.11). However, when the examining physician determined visit appropriateness, physician-referred patients (80%) were deemed appropriate significantly more often than those referred by the health line (56%, p < 0.001) or by self- or parent-referral (63%, p = 0.002). There was no significant difference between these latter 2 referral routes (p = 0.50). In keeping with their greater acuity, physician-referred patients were significantly more likely to have investigations, receive some treatment, be admitted to hospital and have longer lengths of stay. Patients who were self- or parent-referred, and those who were health line–referred were similar to each other in these outcomes.
There was no significant difference in visit appropriateness based on the route of referral when we used set criteria; however, there was when we used treating physician opinion, triage category and resource use.
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