Shortening Emergency Room Wait Times

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Baptist Health Madisonville: Shortening Emergency Room Wait Times

Doctor ALAN THORNER and nurse BETH STEVENSON describe how Baptist Health Madisonville is using a new process to shorten wait times in the Emergency Department.

Shortening ER Wait Times Health Talks Transcript

Beth Stevenson, RN, Emergency Services
I think we have always given high-quality care here in the Emergency Department, but because patients were having to wait so long in the lobby, they often didn’t perceive that they were receiving quality care. The split-flow model is a new process that we have started here at Baptist Health. It basically takes the patients and splits them out by acuity. We divide our patients by higher acuity to go to the main ED, and then the lower acuity patients, who traditionally had to wait in the lobby for a long period of time, come to this new area and are seen more speedily.

Alan Thorner, MD, Emergency Medicine, Medical Director and Chairman
What it does is really help to prevent walkouts. Usually the people who walk out are the ones who don’t have a level one or a level two. These are people that have level 4 and 5. The objective is to be able to treat everybody whether they’re serious or they’re not and to get them treated as quickly as possible. The patients have said they are very surprised we brought them back to the room immediately. They have also said that it was interesting that after they are sent to the intake room, if they are able to, they are put into the results pending area and so there’s a lot of movement and activity, and they are in and out faster than before. So the objective is to try to improve the care of our patients and to make the patient experience a more positive one for the patients in Madisonville.