The Concierge Will See You Now

13 Jul 2012

HD Goodall Hospital in Sanford, ME, is a rural, non-profit hospital seeing about 22,000 patients a year. The emergency department (ED) staff has demonstrated outstanding innovation in implementing strategies that support the total picture of the patient. The staff at HD Goodall continues their system of bringing patients straight back to the rooms when beds are available. These patients are registered at the bedside and triaged in the room to expedite the intake process and decrease wait times. When beds are unavailable, a concierge in the waiting room greets people and begins the registration process. The concierge informs patients of delays and the estimated wait time. The HD Goodall team feels the role of the concierge helps patients feel more comfortable and also helps control the flow of visitors into the ED. The concierge also acts as a messenger between the patient’s family and the ED team. Waiting room patients are triaged by the nurse, and, when applicable, standing orders for basic lab and radiology tests are used to help speed the flow through the ED. HD Goodall has mapped out a system that anticipates throughput challenges to optimally mitigate them. When the decision is made to admit a patient, the ED doctor writes expedited admission orders to admit the patient to the floor. This efficiently decreases the time the patient must remain in the ED.