Reduced Emergency Department Length of Stay and Proportion of Patients Who Left Without Being Seen Following Implementation of an Interprofessional Vertical Flow Track with Pivot Triage: A Retrospective Pre-/Postintervention Evaluation

William J. Leggio, Elliot Carhart, Alison A. Bruckner, Remle Crowe, Cindy Costanzo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Our objective was to assess change in length of stay and patients who left without being seen following implementation of a pivot triage and interprofessional vertical flow track process at a midwestern academic medical center emergency department. The intervention leveraged an existing interprofessional staffing model including a registered nurse and a paramedic to staff a vertical flow track daily from 1100 to 2300. Pre- and postintervention data were retrospectively abstracted from the electronic charting software. Outcomes included emergency department length of stay and percentage of patients leaving without being seen. Visits for patients during the postintervention period (May 10, 2019, to August 31, 2019) were compared with a corresponding preintervention time period 1 year prior (May 10, 2018, to August 31, 2018). The percentage of patients routed to the vertical flow track increased from 5% to 22% following the process intervention. Median emergency department length of stay decreased from 199 (interquartile range [IQR]: 129-282) to 159 (IQR: 98-232) min. The percentage of patients leaving without being seen decreased from 2.9% to 0.5%; between 1100 and 2300, these changes were more pronounced. Odds of a patient experiencing emergency department length of stay under 180 min increased nearly twofold (odds ratio [OR]: 1.92, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.79-2.08) and odds that a patient stayed to be seen by a medical professional increased sixfold (OR: 5.94, 95% CI: 4.08-8.63). Overall, more than 20% of patients were routed through the vertical flow track following the process change. Implementation of an emergency department pivot triage approach with a dedicated interprofessional vertical flow track was associated with significantly shorter emergency department length of stay and reduced patients leaving without being seen.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)136-143
Number of pages8
JournalAdvanced Emergency Nursing Journal
Volume44
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Emergency Medicine
  • Emergency

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