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Multi-department collaboration results in expedited emergency department transfers

10/18/19 03:52:pm

ERnurse.jpgMore than a year ago, Rogers was successful in reducing our average emergency department transfer time to Rogers’ inpatient care from 2.5 hours to just over one hour. Since then, an additional Rogers improvement event explored the transfer process a second time, and the results are nothing short of astounding. The majority of transfer cases are now being approved and communicated in 15 minutes or less.

“Timeliness is a top priority for both emergency departments and patients,” Janet Gatlin, Southeast Wisconsin outreach manager, says. “Being able to provide a recommendation in 15 minutes or less ensures patients have access to our proven continuum of care.”

Janet, who holds a key role in the implementation of our emergency department transfer process, says that while there are still some improvements to make and occasional issues do pop up, the changes so far have been and effective and well received internally and in the hospitals that refer to Rogers.

The new transfer process has consistently met its goals since it was implemented in late August. Since the second week of September, 70% or more of our emergency department transfers have been under 15 minutes. This timeliness is key as the system averages nearly 230 referrals from emergency departments each month.

In the new process, the transferring emergency department calls a hotline for the preferred Rogers location. A social worker or nurse will complete a brief 10-minute screening over the phone. Following the screening, the screener will then communicate that the patient was accepted or notify the caller that the info will need to be reviewed with a doctor. Those involved stay on the phone while the Emergency Department and Rogers physicians talk by phone. Following acceptance, a Rogers nurse reaches out for an RN to RN clinical handoff.

To help the process run as smoothly as possible, quick reference guides have been created and sent to area referring providers.

The RIE team will give their 90-day report out in late October.

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