Emergency Medicine is one of the most challenging medical specialties. Doctors must be dynamic, diverse and able to adapt to this rapidly evolving field. Emergency Medicine is a discipline that serves a whole community of patients both inside and outside the hospital. Emergency Medicine education at UNC occurs at many levels including community outreach, international outreach, EMS, medical students, residents, and fellowships emphasizing on acute care of patients with episodic illnesses. Click below to learn more about the dynamic EM educational opportunities at UNC.
The Emergency Department at the University of North Carolina Hospitals is an integral partner in UNC’s mission to serve the people of North Carolina. In 2008 the ED saw 63,000 of patients from all over the state and many from Virginia and South Carolina. The ED utilizes many resources to ensure excellent patient care including a Level 1 trauma center, a comprehensive burn center, and AirCare, our aero-medical and ground transport service.
Our patients are from every region of the state and beyond. As a referral center for Trauma, Burns, Neurological, and Cardiovascular diseases, the acuity level is high with an admission rate of 30% and an ICU admission rate of 4.5%. The ED is responsible for 52% of hospital admissions. Having these types of percentages shows the importance of proper and accurate prognosis, as well as fast and efficient treatment.
The UNC ED contains 94 treatment spaces in different areas. The Main ED contains 36 treatment spaces and is home to 3 Trauma rooms and numerous rooms dedicated to resuscitation. It is staffed with 40 hours of attending coverage and multiple resident shifts. It is here that the ED physicians coordinate transfers, manage critically ill and injured patients, and arrange appropriate disposition. This is the heart of the ED.
The Peds ED has 9 beds and is open 17 hours a day. It is staffed by the Department of Pediatrics. Pediatric patients are seen by the physicians in the Department of Emergency Medicine in the early and mid morning hours.
There are 17 treatment areas centrally located in the ED known as “Team C”. Team C includes a psychiatric evaluation area that can be secured for patient safety. Team C is also used to facilitate the accomplishment of the parallel processes incorporated in the Patient Centered Evaluation initiative. This strategy employs resources to patients that are awaiting a dedicated treatment space. Labs can be drawn, radiographs ordered, and treatment started.
The ED acquired 21 rooms in a new space that opened July 2009. This area currently is used to evaluate non critically ill and injured patients. Each room is private and contains a stretcher, computer, television and handwashing facilities. It is staffed with 16 hours of attending coverage with resident and physician extenders completing the care team.
The ED Holding area is a 9 beds and houses patients that have been evaluated and treated in the ED and are under the care of a hospital based team but do not yet have a bed in the hospital.