Improving waiting times in the Emergency Department
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Waiting times in the Emergency Department cause considerable delays in care and in patient satisfaction. There are many moving parts to the ED visit with multiple providers delivering care for a single patient. Factors that have been shown to delay care in the ED have been broken down into input factors such as triaging, throughput factors during the visit, and output factors, which include discharge planning and available inpatient beds for admitted patients. Research has shown that throughput factors are an area of interest to decrease time spent in the ED that will lead to decrease waiting room times. In this Quality Improvement project, we will develop a systematic check in system with ED providers that will allow providers to identify any outstanding issues that may be delaying care or discharge. We hypothesize that this system will increase throughput in the ED by resolving any lab, radiology, or treatments that were overlooked. Reviewing the results of this QI project will allow us to see if we were effective in our timing of scheduled check-ins. Ultimately, this will reduce time spent in the waiting room by allowing more patients to be seen. In the era of the Affordable Care Act, more patients have access to affordable healthcare and will increase volume in the ED. This check-in system will allow more patients to be seen smoothly and in a timely manner that will improve and increase patient care and satisfaction in the ED.