Emergency Department Waits and Patient Flow

Key Actions:
  • Establish protocols for linking ‘unattached’ patients to Primary Health Care Team or General Practitioner during ED visit.
  • Establish protocols for safe and timely transfers of care across continuum.
  • Optimize care team complement and scopes of practice within EDs.
  • Build capacity by developing geriatric core competencies.
  • Optimize triage protocols within the ED.
  • Establish a patient navigation strategy to improve patient outcomes and reduce ED re-visits and acute care readmissions.
  • Fully implement medication reconciliation at transfer or discharge from acute care, and admission and transfer from long term care.

Outcome:
  • By March 31, 2017, no patient will wait for care in the emergency department.

Improvement Targets:
  • Maintain the number of Alternate Level of Care days (waiting placement) across the province and in each region at no more than 3.5% of total.
  • By March 31, 2015, 50% reduction in emergency department waits.

Benefits of this Work:
  • This work focuses on providing more primary health care options in the community, increasing support for patients with mental health and addictions needs, patients with complex medical, social, and behavioral needs, and for seniors. Improvement work in this area therefore seeks to improve Emergency Department (ED) procedures in addition to addressing related processes and pressures outside the ED.