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Emergency department observation unit: can it be funded through reduced inpatient admission?
Ann Emerg Med. 1998 Dec; 32(6):670-5.AE

Abstract

STUDY OBJECTIVE

We sought to test the assumption that an emergency department observation unit can be funded through the reallocation of resources made available through the unit's impact in reducing inpatient admissions and facilitating bed closures.

METHODS

We conducted our study in a tertiary care center ED with 46,000 visits annually. For a 3-month period, all patients admitted to the hospital through the ED were screened by an emergency physician for suitability for admission to an observation unit. Any patient in the hospital for 3 days or less who did not undergo surgery or other inpatient procedure, and who was admitted through the ED, was considered a candidate for the observation unit.

RESULTS

Of 1,840 admissions, 147 patients met the admission criteria. Only 48 (32.2%) could have been treated in an observation unit, and these patients were not admitted to any single unit in high frequency. The potential savings from inpatient bed closures would only have amounted to 1.68 full-time equivalents-not enough to staff a 4-bed observation unit, which would require 5 full-time equivalents.

CONCLUSION

Because of the diffuse and inconsistent effect such a unit had on inpatient bed use, funding for an ED observation unit at our institution could not be justified on the basis of the closure of inpatient beds and transfer of resources.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Division of Emergency Medicine, Dalhousie University, Queen Elizabeth Health Sciences Centre, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.No affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Comparative Study
Journal Article

Language

eng

PubMed ID

9832662

Citation

Sinclair, D, and R Green. "Emergency Department Observation Unit: Can It Be Funded Through Reduced Inpatient Admission?" Annals of Emergency Medicine, vol. 32, no. 6, 1998, pp. 670-5.
Sinclair D, Green R. Emergency department observation unit: can it be funded through reduced inpatient admission? Ann Emerg Med. 1998;32(6):670-5.
Sinclair, D., & Green, R. (1998). Emergency department observation unit: can it be funded through reduced inpatient admission? Annals of Emergency Medicine, 32(6), 670-5.
Sinclair D, Green R. Emergency Department Observation Unit: Can It Be Funded Through Reduced Inpatient Admission. Ann Emerg Med. 1998;32(6):670-5. PubMed PMID: 9832662.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Emergency department observation unit: can it be funded through reduced inpatient admission? AU - Sinclair,D, AU - Green,R, PY - 1998/12/2/pubmed PY - 1998/12/2/medline PY - 1998/12/2/entrez SP - 670 EP - 5 JF - Annals of emergency medicine JO - Ann Emerg Med VL - 32 IS - 6 N2 - STUDY OBJECTIVE: We sought to test the assumption that an emergency department observation unit can be funded through the reallocation of resources made available through the unit's impact in reducing inpatient admissions and facilitating bed closures. METHODS: We conducted our study in a tertiary care center ED with 46,000 visits annually. For a 3-month period, all patients admitted to the hospital through the ED were screened by an emergency physician for suitability for admission to an observation unit. Any patient in the hospital for 3 days or less who did not undergo surgery or other inpatient procedure, and who was admitted through the ED, was considered a candidate for the observation unit. RESULTS: Of 1,840 admissions, 147 patients met the admission criteria. Only 48 (32.2%) could have been treated in an observation unit, and these patients were not admitted to any single unit in high frequency. The potential savings from inpatient bed closures would only have amounted to 1.68 full-time equivalents-not enough to staff a 4-bed observation unit, which would require 5 full-time equivalents. CONCLUSION: Because of the diffuse and inconsistent effect such a unit had on inpatient bed use, funding for an ED observation unit at our institution could not be justified on the basis of the closure of inpatient beds and transfer of resources. SN - 0196-0644 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/9832662/Emergency_department_observation_unit:_can_it_be_funded_through_reduced_inpatient_admission L2 - https://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S0196064498004168 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -