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J Korean Soc Emerg Med > Volume 23(2); 2012 > Article
Journal of The Korean Society of Emergency Medicine 2012;23(2): 255-261.
The Effectiveness of Fast Track for Minor Patients in the Emergency Department
Tae Hoon Kim, Hyung Jin Shin, Yong Sung Cha, Kyoung Chul Cha, Hyun Kim, Kang Hyun Lee, Sung Oh Hwang
Department of Emergency Medicine, Wonju College of Medicine, Yonsei University, Wonju, Korea. emergency@yonsei.ac.kr
Overcrowding in the Emergency Department (ED) has long been a serious issue. We considered factors of overcrowding with regard to visits by minor patients to the ED. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effectiveness of fast track for minor patients in the ED.
This was a before and after study. We compared the before fast track group, from November 2010 to March 2011, with the after fast track group, from April to August 2011. Data included demographic data, differential diagnosis, length of stay, waiting time, overcrowding score using the National Emergency Department Overcrowding Scale (NEDOCS), and questionnaires for evaluation of satisfaction of patients in the fast track group.
We observed that the majority of patients in the fast track group(79.6%) were simple trauma patients. Length of stay for patients in the fast track group was shortened by twice as much as that of patients in the before fast track group and waiting time was shorter by four minutes (p<0.001). After managing fast track, NEDOCS and score variation were smaller, from 129.71+/-62.31[Mean+/-SD (standard deviation)] to 97.42+/-24.26. Patient satisfaction in the fast track group showed a high score of 8.93 out of 10.
Length of stay and waiting time were significantly shorter for minor patients who underwent fast track treatment and scores for overcrowding have shown improvement with stable state in the ED.
Key words: Emergency department, Crowding, Length of stay, Patient satisfaction
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