What Time Is Your Emergency? Some ERs Taking Appointments

Hospitals around the country are looking for creative ways to cut down on long waits in the emergency room.

So now some are asking patients to make E.R. appointments online.

The move is an effort to attract anxious patients looking to avoid long waits in a crowded and often chaotic environment.

The system is intended only for patients who don't have life-threatening or debilitating emergencies. Those patients are asked to call 911 immediately.

Critics say the online check-in system may be convenient but is not cost-effective.