The Particulars: Crowding in EDs throughout the United States has been labeled a national crisis in need of systematic approaches to improve patient flow and increase bed capacity. Physician engagement and involvement in patient flow improvement efforts may be crucial to these approaches.
Data Breakdown: Researchers implemented a 12-month program in which ED patients were assigned to their treating physician immediately at the time of triage. The average daily ED census increased from 189 prior to implementation to 201 after. Average daily admission rates increased from 7.9% to 9.1%. Average times for arrival to physician start time decreased from 48.45 minutes to 37.42 minutes. Average ED length of stay decreased from 220.41 minutes to 201.24 minutes.
Take Home Pearl: Assigning ED patients to an emergency physician at the time of triage appears to decrease the time from arrival to being seen by a doctor and ED length of stay.
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