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Report: Oregon's emergency rooms improve from 47th in the nation to 32nd

 Posted: 8:05 AM January 22, 2014

Oregon's Emergency Rooms are improving, but they still rank 32rd in the nation according to a report by the American College of Emergency Physicians.

The report grades emergency rooms on everything from the quality of care, to prevention activities and disaster preparedness.

In 2009 the study ranked Oregon 47th, prompting Governor John Kitzhaber to put together a task force. The chair, Doctor John Moorehead, says he's pleased the state's rank improved and Oregon's score went from a D to a D-plus.

But he said, overall this report presented a mixed bag, "We have great motorcycle helmet laws, traffic safety laws. We've actually shown a slight improvement in most of these areas. But we still have a failing grade in access to emergency care. In fact we received an F grade, one of the lowest in the country."

The state has a high percentage of children covered by health insurance. But the study says that many children in Oregon are still under-insured, and so their their parents often cite high costs as a barrier to care.

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