Emergency Rooms For Seniors


An emergency hospital visit often equals long waits and noisy controlled chaos, an atmosphere particularly hard on older patients. But Memorial Regional Hospital South is trying something new: giving seniors an emergency room of their own.

The Hollywood health-care facility is among a small but growing number of hospitals nationwide looking to change the emergency room experience for elders.

Many geriatric emergency departments began as a way for the competitive hospital industry to appeal to the huge baby boom population. Dawn Lipka, Memorial South’s emergency services director, said her program originally was designed to market to the retirement condos nearby.

“We like it when they refer to us as ‘their’ hospital,” Lipka said. “We are smaller, quieter and can give them more personalized attention.”

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