How Osler’s EDs are “humming like a sewing machine”

This week’s guest blogger is Dr. Naveed Mohammad, VP Medical Affairs

It’s no secret that Osler is home to one of the busiest emergency departments (ED) in Canada. Last year, more than 214,000 people visited the EDs at Brampton Civic and Etobicoke General for care, which accounts for an additional 3,400 patients over the previous year. With this kind of volume increase, our teams in the ED need to be at the top of their game.

On any given day, we strive to meet specific targets in the ED – length of stay, time to physician assessment and time to inpatient bed among others to help deliver a better patient experience. We recently reached a new milestone in the ED at Etobicoke General as our 30-day 90th Percentile Time to Physician Initial Assessment (PIA) was reduced to just 1.5 hours for the first time. This means that patients were seen by a physician within 90 minutes, ranking Osler second in the province for this metric.

Two days later, the same team beat its own record and reduced the 30-day 90th Percentile Time to PIA to just one hour. As one physician put it, “we’re humming like a sewing machine.”

These incredible results show that our ED teams are performing at an incredibly high level. In addition to the talent of Osler staff, physicians and volunteers in the ED, a number of measures have recently been put in place to help move patients through the ED more quickly and efficiently.

Some of the changes that are making a difference in Etobicoke General’s ED include:

  • Designated “see and treat” zones in the Ambulatory Treatment Centre (ATC) and Fast Track zones that help to expedite care
  • Demonstrations of exceptional teamwork where physicians arrive early to help move patients and relay information between members of the care team

We’re also making positive changes to the ED at Brampton Civic to help see and treat patients faster:

  • Our ED Patient Experience Team is helping to keep patients comfortable and informed while they wait for treatment
  • Increased physician hours and “flex shifts” are enabling physicians to support busy areas of the ED at any time during the day
  • A new Mental Health Patient Flow Initiative is helping to move mental health patients out of the waiting area and into care quicker

While all of these initiatives help to increase the efficiency of the ED care team, these changes serve a double purpose to enhance the patient experience. A trip to the ED can be a stressful experience but shorter wait times, more frequent contact with patients and better information sharing helps make patients feel more comfortable throughout their journey.

Congratulations to the multi-disciplinary teams who are truly coming together in the ED to provide patient-inspired health care without boundaries!

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