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Emergency department patient satisfaction: examining the role of acuity.
Acad Emerg Med. 2004 Feb; 11(2):162-8.AE

Abstract

OBJECTIVES

To explore the relationships between patient acuity, perceived and actual throughput times, and emergency department (ED) patient satisfaction. The authors hypothesized that high-acuity patients would be the most satisfied with their throughput times, as well as the overall ED visit. The authors also expected overall ED satisfaction to be more strongly associated with perceived throughput times compared with actual throughput times, regardless of acuity.

METHODS

This was a prospective survey of 1,865 ED patients at a large, inner-city hospital during a one-month period. Data were collected on patient demographics, acuity of patient illness, actual waiting time for evaluation by a physician, and actual overall length of stay. Patient satisfaction with various throughput times (i.e., perceived throughput time) and overall ED visit was assessed by using a seven-point scale (1 = poor, 7 = excellent). Analysis of variance, analysis of covariance (ANCOVA), and correlations were conducted to explore the hypotheses.

RESULTS

Patients with "emergent" acuity perceived their throughput times more favorably and were more satisfied with their overall ED visit compared with "urgent" and "routine" patients (all p < 0.01). Once the effects of perceived throughput time were controlled for by using an ANCOVA, acuity no longer predicted overall ED satisfaction. Correlations showed that overall ED satisfaction was more closely linked to perceived throughput times than to actual throughput times (average r = 0.62 vs. -0.12).

CONCLUSIONS

"Emergent" patients are more satisfied than "urgent" and "routine" patients with their ED visits. "Emergent" patients perceived their throughput times more favorably than other patients, especially their wait for physician evaluation. Changing perceptions of throughput times may yield larger improvements in satisfaction than decreasing actual throughput times, regardless of patient acuity.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Cooper Hospital and University of Medicine and Dentistry, New Jersey Robert Wood Johnson Medical School Camden, NJ 08103, USA. boudreaux-edwin@cooperhealth.eduNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Comparative Study
Journal Article

Language

eng

PubMed ID

14759959

Citation

Boudreaux, Edwin D., et al. "Emergency Department Patient Satisfaction: Examining the Role of Acuity." Academic Emergency Medicine : Official Journal of the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine, vol. 11, no. 2, 2004, pp. 162-8.
Boudreaux ED, Friedman J, Chansky ME, et al. Emergency department patient satisfaction: examining the role of acuity. Acad Emerg Med. 2004;11(2):162-8.
Boudreaux, E. D., Friedman, J., Chansky, M. E., & Baumann, B. M. (2004). Emergency department patient satisfaction: examining the role of acuity. Academic Emergency Medicine : Official Journal of the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine, 11(2), 162-8.
Boudreaux ED, et al. Emergency Department Patient Satisfaction: Examining the Role of Acuity. Acad Emerg Med. 2004;11(2):162-8. PubMed PMID: 14759959.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Emergency department patient satisfaction: examining the role of acuity. AU - Boudreaux,Edwin D, AU - Friedman,Jason, AU - Chansky,Michael E, AU - Baumann,Brigitte M, PY - 2004/2/5/pubmed PY - 2004/6/21/medline PY - 2004/2/5/entrez SP - 162 EP - 8 JF - Academic emergency medicine : official journal of the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine JO - Acad Emerg Med VL - 11 IS - 2 N2 - OBJECTIVES: To explore the relationships between patient acuity, perceived and actual throughput times, and emergency department (ED) patient satisfaction. The authors hypothesized that high-acuity patients would be the most satisfied with their throughput times, as well as the overall ED visit. The authors also expected overall ED satisfaction to be more strongly associated with perceived throughput times compared with actual throughput times, regardless of acuity. METHODS: This was a prospective survey of 1,865 ED patients at a large, inner-city hospital during a one-month period. Data were collected on patient demographics, acuity of patient illness, actual waiting time for evaluation by a physician, and actual overall length of stay. Patient satisfaction with various throughput times (i.e., perceived throughput time) and overall ED visit was assessed by using a seven-point scale (1 = poor, 7 = excellent). Analysis of variance, analysis of covariance (ANCOVA), and correlations were conducted to explore the hypotheses. RESULTS: Patients with "emergent" acuity perceived their throughput times more favorably and were more satisfied with their overall ED visit compared with "urgent" and "routine" patients (all p < 0.01). Once the effects of perceived throughput time were controlled for by using an ANCOVA, acuity no longer predicted overall ED satisfaction. Correlations showed that overall ED satisfaction was more closely linked to perceived throughput times than to actual throughput times (average r = 0.62 vs. -0.12). CONCLUSIONS: "Emergent" patients are more satisfied than "urgent" and "routine" patients with their ED visits. "Emergent" patients perceived their throughput times more favorably than other patients, especially their wait for physician evaluation. Changing perceptions of throughput times may yield larger improvements in satisfaction than decreasing actual throughput times, regardless of patient acuity. SN - 1069-6563 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/14759959/Emergency_department_patient_satisfaction:_examining_the_role_of_acuity_ L2 - https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/resolve/openurl?genre=article&amp;sid=nlm:pubmed&amp;issn=1069-6563&amp;date=2004&amp;volume=11&amp;issue=2&amp;spage=162 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -