Pain is often the first sign that something is wrong and to seek help. According to the CDC 2018 National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey Emergency Department Summary tables, there are 130 million visits per year in the ER and approximately 42% are for pain.
Of all reasons for an emergency room visit, these pain related reasons were amongst the top 10: 2.4% for pain not related to a specific body system, 5.5% for chest pain, 8.5% for abdominal pain, and 2.7% for headaches.
Because pain is subjective, it is often difficult to treat and relies on the healthcare provider’s perception of the patient. Unfortunately, biases exist that impact what treatments people will receive. In this QR Code, we feature the video “Pain, it's complicated: A focus on biases in ethnic minorities” which discusses why bias exists in pain treatments and what can be done to reduce them.
Read More about the National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey:
- Cairns C, Kang K, Santo L. National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey: 2018 emergency department summary tables. Available from: https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nhamcs/web_tables/2018-ed-web-tables-508.pdf