New Jersey’s largest healthcare system just signed on to take part in the new Emergency Triage, Treat and Transport (ET3) pilot program being rolled out by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. As reported by New Jersey Business Magazine, patients in need of EMS services at Hackensack Meridian Health’s Hackensack University Medical Center and JFK University Medical Center will now have the option to be taken by EMS to urgent care instead of the emergency room, assuming that’s clinically appropriate for their complaint. EMS can also be the conduit to telehealth care (again, assuming that would be an appropriate setting for the situation). EMTs, nurses, and paramedics at the participating facilities will receive special training to help them distinguish patients who really do need to be taken to the ED from those who could be treated safely in a nonemergent setting. Patients will still have the option of visiting the ED if that’s their preference.

More Options for Medicare Patients in Need of EMS Could Mean More Visits to Urgent Care