Rapid assessment team reduces waiting time

Grant, Steven, Spain, David and Green, David (1999) Rapid assessment team reduces waiting time. Emergency Medicine, 11 2: 72-77. doi:10.1046/j.1442-2026.1999.00017.x

Author Grant, Steven
Spain, David
Green, David
Title Rapid assessment team reduces waiting time
Journal name Emergency Medicine   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1035-6851
Publication date 1999-06
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1046/j.1442-2026.1999.00017.x
Volume 11
Issue 2
Start page 72
End page 77
Total pages 6
Place of publication Carton, VIC, Australia
Publisher Blackwell Science
Collection year 1999
Language eng
Subject C1
321215 Health Care Administration
730399 Health and support services not elsewhere classified
Formatted abstract
Objective: In an effort to reduce waiting times and improve the performance of the clinical indicator waiting time relative to triage category, a rapid assessment team was implemented.

Methods: The rapid assessment team consists of the rapid assessment team doctor and triage nurse. The rapid assessment team ensured, wherever possible, that patients were medically assessed prior to expiration of the waiting time appropriate to their National Triage Scale. Waiting time performance indicators, median waiting time and length of stay during the 3 months the rapid assessment team was operative were compared with the same period 1 year before.

Results: During the 3 month period where the rapid assessment team was operative, 59.0% of patients (n = 5877) were seen within accepted time standards and the median waiting time was 32 min. This compared with 39.1% (n = 3901) and 50 min, respectively, in the same period 1 year before (P < 0.001). There was no significant difference in median length of stay (3.2 h for both, P = 0.18). Improvements in waiting times occurred in all triage categories except category 1. Due to a lack of resources and funds, the rapid assessment team was discontinued on 4 October 1997.

Conclusions: The rapid assessment team reduces doctor waiting times. Departments considering implementing a rapid assessment team should ensure it is funded as a separate resource.
Q-Index Code C1

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: School of Medicine Publications
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Created: Tue, 10 Jun 2008, 13:41:30 EST