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2021 SAEM Consensus Conference Proceedings: Research Priorities for Implementing Emergency Department Screening for Social Risks and Needs.
Yore M, Fockele CE, Duber HC, Doran KM, Cooper RJ, Lin MP, Campbell S, Eswaran V, Chang B, Hong H, Gbenedio K, Stanford KA, Gavin N. 2021 SAEM Consensus Conference Proceedings: Research Priorities for Implementing Emergency Department Screening for Social Risks and Needs. The western journal of emergency medicine. 2023 Feb 24; 24(2):302-311.
Despite literature on a variety of social risks and needs screening interventions in emergency department (ED) settings, there is no universally accepted or evidence-based process for conducting such interventions. Many factors hamper or promote implementation of social risks and needs screening in the ED, but the relative impact of these factors and how best to mitigate/leverage them is unknown.
Drawing on an extensive literature review, expert assessment, and feedback from participants in the 2021 Society for Academic Emergency Medicine Consensus Conference through moderated discussions and follow-up surveys, we identified research gaps and rated research priorities for implementing screening for social risks and needs in the ED. We identified three main knowledge gaps: 1) screening implementation mechanics; 2) outreach and engagement with communities; and 3) addressing barriers and leveraging facilitators to screening. Within these gaps, we identified 12 high-priority research questions as well as research methods for future studies.
Consensus Conference participants broadly agreed that social risks and needs screening is generally acceptable to patients and clinicians and feasible in an ED setting. Our literature review and conference discussion identified several research gaps in the specific mechanics of screening implementation, including screening and referral team composition, workflow, and use of technology. Discussions also highlighted a need for more collaboration with stakeholders in screening design and implementation. Additionally, discussions identified the need for studies using adaptive designs or hybrid effectiveness-implementation models to test multiple strategies for implementation and sustainability.
Through a robust consensus process we developed an actionable research agenda for implementing social risks and needs screening in EDs. Future work in this area should use implementation science frameworks and research best practices to further develop and refine ED screening for social risks and needs and to address barriers as well as leverage facilitators to such screening.