Examining Emergency Department Inequities (EEDI): do they exist?

Project Overview

Māori disparities in health outcomes and healthcare service delivery are well documented, however, there has been a limited focus on the contribution of Emergency Department (ED) care to inequities within a New Zealand (NZ) context. Internationally, ED care has been associated with ethnic inequities in mortality, wait times, leaving ED before being seen and differential pain management. This research investigates whether ethnic inequities within EDs in NZ exist. If ethnic differences are found, this research will examine the potential explanations for these differences and whether the ED disparities are likely to contribute to Māori: non-Māori differences in clinical outcomes. A quantitative study guided by a Kaupapa Māori Research framework will involve secondary data analysis of the existing Shorter Stays in Emergency Department (SSED) dataset inclusive of additional NZ Health Information Service data. The SSED dataset represents 18/20 District Health Boards in NZ and includes ≈5.7 million ED visits between 2006-2012.


Examining Emergency Department Inequities (EEDI) aims to investigate whether clinically important ethnic inequities between Māori and non-Māori exist within EDs across NZ. The research objectives include investigation of ED inequities within (a) patient-centred markers of care (e.g. whether patients waited to be seen by a physician, the time from presentation to ED and assessment by an ED physician, readmission or re-presentation post ED visit), (b) system-centred markers of care (e.g. length of stay (LOS) in the ED, admission to hospital and indicators of access block as a marker of overcrowding) and (c) mortality (e.g. within ED or within ten days of ED assessment, 30 days post discharge).



Curtis, E., Paine, S-J., Jiang, Y., Jones, P., Tomash, I., Raumati, I., & Reid, P. (2019). Examining emergency department inequities: Do they exist? Emergency Medicine Australasia. DOI: 10.1111/1742-6723.13315 

EEDI published protocol paper


Primary Investigator:

Assoc. Prof. Elana Curtis 

Tōmaiora Named Investigators:

Dr Sarah-Jane Paine 

Prof. Papaarangi Reid

Dr Inia Raumati


Assoc. Pro. Peter Jones

Inia Tomash

Dr Yannan Yiang

Funding details:

Health Research Council of New Zealand project grant 2018

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