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EDM 2021 masthead1

August 1, 2013

View Archives Issues

  • New tool aims to standardize handoffs in the ED, boosting safety and preventing communication failures

    To address identified patient safety risks in the handoff process, a group of emergency providers developed Safer Sign Out, a paper-based template that prompts clinicians to jointly review issues of concern on patients who are being passed from one clinician to another at the end of a shift. Already in practice at 12 hospitals in the Mid-Atlantic region, the approach is now being disseminated nationwide with the help of the non-profit Emergency Medicine Patient Safety Foundation.
  • Anticipate pushback, identify champions for successful launch of sign out process

    Administrators interested in implementing the Safer Sign Out process should first reach out to physicians and nurses to discuss problems related to handoffs and get their feedback, advises Fuller. If you show them what the issue is up front, then they will be more prepared for it, he says.
  • Rapid-response process reduces mortality, facilitates speedy treatment for patients with sepsis

    To reduce mortality and improve the care of patients with sepsis, Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem, NC, created a new rapid-response protocol aimed at facilitating earlier diagnosis and treatment. In this approach, clinicians who suspect a patient may have sepsis can call a Code Sepsis, which will fast-track the series of tests and evaluations that are needed to confirm the diagnosis and get appropriate patients on IV antibiotics quickly. Administrators say the approach fits in with the culture of the ED, and it has quickly slashed time-to-treatment in this environment.
  • Mandatory education module, department champions facilitate adoption of new process for sepsis care

    Getting the entire clinical staff on board with a new process for assessing and treating sepsis was a daunting task when administrators at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem, NC, began the effort in April of 2012. However, by eliciting the assistance of department champions, and by mandating that everyone complete an online module that explains the new process, the transition to the new process was smooth. We had a very strong expectation and we followed through, explains Catherine Messick Jones, MD, MS, associate chief medical officer, medical services.
  • San Diego ED leverages telemedicine in a bid to ease crowding, long wait times

    In a study dubbed Emergency Department Telemedicine Initiative to Rapidly Accommodate in Times of Emergency (EDTITRATE), investigators at the University of California San Diego Health System are gauging whether remote physicians can be quickly and cost-effectively mobilized to evaluate patients when the ED is busy. While there have been administrative hurdles involved with implementing the approach, investigators say the strategy could offer big savings in terms of time and efficiency.