Emergency Department Wait Time
The most frequent complaint voiced about emergency department wait time to the Hospital CEO was that new patients experience long waits throughout their experience. Long waits to be admitted, long waits before receiving treatment, and even longer waits in the overall treatment process. Reduce the total wait time experienced by patients and increase their satisfaction with the overall emergency department experience. There were no expectations of financial results for this project.
Mapping the issues that were causing emergency department wait time to be longer, ASI examine key emergency department processes. Team members were observed operations and recorded data for actual visits on all shifts. The following were discovered: inconsistencies between shifts non-value-added activities opportunities to better coordinate scheduling of procedures patients often were unaware of their status. Differences between shifts were analyzed and best practices implemented. Some of the non-value-added steps were eliminated. Blood testing and other procedures were coordinated to minimize waiting. Patients were more thoroughly advised of current activities.
Overall wait time was reduced by 25%, resulting in improved patient satisfaction. In addition, the streamlining of the processes yielded annual savings of $200,000 in operating expenses.