RWJ Hamilton Announces Quality Initiative to Improve ED Wait Times
Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Hamilton, ranked among the best in the nation for emergency medicine, now is guaranteeing every patient will be seen by a practitioner within 15 minutes of arriving in the emergency department, part of a continued effort to enhance hospital efficiencies and to reduce wait times.
RWJ Hamilton’s 15/30 Guarantee ensures emergency department patients receive an evaluation within 15 minutes of their arrival and a medical examination within 30 minutes of arrival. If the hospital does not meet this standard, that portion of the patient’s visit is waived, says Lisa Breza, Chief Nursing Officer.
“In an emergency situation, fast and efficient care often yields the best results,” says Breza. “Improving patient wait times means our providers are able to intervene faster, increasing the chance that the patient’s experience will be positive.”
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, emergency wait times have increased by nearly 50 percent nationwide over the past decade.
Breza says the 15/30 Guarantee is a hospital-wide initiative that required more than a year of tracking visits and working on process improvements in all areas of the hospital that contribute to emergency department efficiency.
“The beauty of this initiative is that it doesn’t sacrifice quality of care,” says Breza. “Patients are not receiving less treatment or shorter examinations. The operational efficiencies were gained through a combination of reducing internal bureaucracy among departments and streamlining redundant processes in the emergency department.”
According to Skip Cimino, president and CEO of RWJ Hamilton, quality and service have always been top priorities for the hospital, but now healthcare consumers expect more.
“The best businesses are the ones that manage customer expectations, and the same goes for hospitals. The best thing about our 15/30 guarantee is that patients know what to expect when they walk through the door – they can trust RWJ Hamilton to provide safe, high quality, efficient emergency care.”
RWJ Hamilton’s emergency department sees more than 50,000 patients a year and is staffed around-the-clock with specially trained emergency physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, and emergency certified nurses. HealthGrades, the nation's leading, independent source of hospital quality ratings recently ranked RWJ Hamilton’s Emergency Department among the top five percent of hospitals nationwide for the second year in a row, the only hospital in Mercer County to be included in this elite group.
For more information on RWJ Hamilton’s 15/30 Guarantee, visit rwjhamilton.org/guarantee or call 609.584.5900.