Prolonged stays in emergency departments increase the risk of adverse events in elderly patients. To optimize care for nonurgent patients who need in-hospital admission, a patient-focused improvement project named Direct In-hospital admission Via Ambulance (DIVA) was launched at Örebro University Hospital.
This study describes the effects of DIVA. The primary outcome was time to in-hospital admission. Secondary outcomes were the in-hospital admission rate, the in-hospital length of stay and patient characteristics.
This was a retrospective observational study. Descriptive and comparative statistics were used. All patients identified by the ambulance nurse as nonurgent but with an apparent need for in-hospital admission were candidates for direct in-hospital admission. The results were compared with those of a reference group.
In total, 127 patients were included, with 45 patients in the DIVA group and 82 patients in the reference group. In the DIVA group, 24 patients were directly admitted. The median time to in-hospital admisson was 49.5 min for direct admitted patients and 278.5 min for the reference group. There was a statistical significant difference between the groups (p < 0.01).
The current study indicates that time to in-hospital admission could be reduced by DIVA.
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