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Emergency department conditions associated with the number of patients who leave a pediatric emergency department before physician assessment



Emergency department conditions associated with the number of patients who leave a pediatric emergency department before physician assessment



Pediatric Emergency Care 29(10): 1082-1090



As emergency department (ED) waiting times and volumes increase, substantial numbers of patients leave without being seen (LWBS) by a physician. The objective of this study was to identify ED conditions reflecting patient input, throughput, and output associated with the number of patients who LWBS in a pediatric setting. This study was a retrospective, descriptive study using data from 1 urban, tertiary care pediatric ED. The study population consisted of all patient visits to the ED from April 2005 to March 2007. Multivariate Poisson regression analyses were used to examine the impact of the timing of patient arrival and ED conditions including patient acuity, volume, and waiting times on the number of patients who LWBS. During the study period, there were 138,361 patient visits corresponding to 2190 consecutive shifts; 11,055 patients (8%) left without being seen by a physician.In the multivariate analysis, the throughput variables, time from triage to physician assessment (rate ratio, 2.11; 95% confidence interval, 2.01-2.21), and time from registration to triage (rate ratio, 1.55; 95% confidence interval, 1.25-1.90) had the largest association with the number of patients who LWBS. In the study ED, throughput variables played a more important role than input or output variables on the number of patients who LWBS. This finding, which contrasts with a work done previously in an ED serving primarily adults, highlights the importance of pediatric specific research on the impacts of increasing ED waiting times and volumes.

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Accession: 052942934

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 24076610

DOI: 10.1097/pec.0b013e3182a5cbc2


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