Commentary: Leveraging accountability for advocacy

Ann Emerg Med

Emergency medicine has broad accountabilities established by EMTALA and complementary state and federal laws, which provide leverage and opportunities to advocate the practice of social emergency medicine in the interests of our patients. Social determinants of health are manifest in each emergency department (ED) patient presentation, and recognizing their effect on individual health is integral to understanding the root and proximal causes of a patient’s emergency medical condition. As the nexus of the US health care safety net, emergency physicians occupy a strategic position to identify, stratify, document, and address the social determinants that influence each patient’s health during his or her contact with the health care system.

This article is part of a special supplement: Inventing Social Emergency Medicine: A Consensus Conference to Establish the Intellectual Underpinnings of Social Emergency Medicine.

Barsotti C. Commentary: Leveraging accountability for advocacy. Ann Emerg Med. 2019;74(5):S69-S70. DOI:

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