Washington 2002: First-Ever National Conference on Emergency Department Data Collection

Conference on emergency department data collection

The National Association of Health Data Organizations, Salt Lake City, Utah, convened the Emergency Department Data Conference on April 22–23, 2002 in Washington as the first-ever national conference devoted solely to the collection and use of data in hospital emergency departments.

The conference provided a forum for experts to prepare a national agenda to encourage states to create and enhance statewide emergency department databases. Some experts believe that improved data collection can help states improve the performance of their public health systems and their care of vulnerable populations.

Key Results

  • Under the theme: "Emerging Frontier for Public Health Information: State Emergency Department Databases," the conference brought together representatives from more than 25 states that are in various stages of revising their emergency department data reporting systems.

    At roundtable discussions, conference faculty and participants developed a national agenda for supporting states in creating and enhancing statewide emergency department databases:
    • Develop a statewide vision and state health data plan.
    • Identify funding solutions to push states toward integration of emergency department and other health data.
    • Enhance communication and trust across all stakeholder groups.
    • Define standards for completeness and timeliness of emergency data reporting.
    • Develop national content standards and analytic tools.
    • Disseminate standards or guidelines for data release, access and pricing.
    • Improve administrative data turn-around times.
  • The project also supported two sessions focused on emergency department data collection and use at the 17th National Association of Health Data Organizations Annual Meeting, held December 2–4, 2002, in Atlanta.


The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) provided a grant of $39,970 to the association in partial support of the conference.

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