Safety and efficiency of a redirection procedure toward an out of hours general practice before admission to an emergency department, an observational study.
BMC Emerg Med. 2018 Aug 22;18(1):26
Authors: Morin C, Choukroun J, Callahan JC
BACKGROUND: Primary care patients are often cited as a cause of Emergency Department overcrowding (ED). The aim of this study was to evaluate a physician led redirection procedure of selected patients towards an out of hours general practice (OHGP) in an Emergency Department with 55,000 admissions per year.
METHODS: Observational monocentric study over a period of 2 months. Every patient redirected to the OHGP was included and subsequently contacted by telephone to answer a standardized questionnaire, in order to measure: Redirection rate over the entire period and during weekdays or weekends/holiday Rate of redirected patients who went to the OHGP Rate of redirected patients who consulted in an ED in the next 72 h for the same reason Redirected patients' satisfaction rate RESULTS: During the study period 9551 patients presented to the ED, of which 288 were redirected towards the OHGP (3%). The redirection rate was 1.9% during weekdays and 5.7% during weekends/holiday (p < 0.001). Of the redirected patients, 77% answered the telephone interview. Ninety percent of these patients consulted the OHGP. The main reasons for not consulting were: unduly long wait, opening hours not suitable, too costly. The rate of redirected patients who consulted in an ED in the following 72 h for the same reason was 4.1%. The satisfaction rate was 79.6% among interviewed patients.
CONCLUSIONS: A physician led procedure to redirect selected patients from the ED towards an OHGP results in a low redirection rate, unlikely to have a significant effect on ED patient flow. However, the procedure is safe and well accepted by a majority of patients.
PMID: 30134934 [PubMed - in process]