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A&E (ED) clinical quality indicators
  1. Geoff Hughes
  1. Correspondence to Geoff Hughes, Emergency Department, Royal Adelaide Hospital, North Terrace, Adelaide 5000, Australia; cchdhb{at}

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Last year, a week before Christmas, the Department of Health published a 35-page document with the above title (apart from the parenthesised ED), in which it defines the new quality indicators.1 Developed by the National Clinical Director for Urgent and Emergency Care in collaboration with the College of Emergency Medicine and the Royal College of Nursing, the indicators aim ‘to provide a comprehensive and balanced view of care delivery, and accurately reflect the experience and safety of patients and the effectiveness of the care they receive’. As promised by the Minister of Health in the middle of 2010, the indicators replace the 4 h waiting time standard for A&E (ED) and came into effect last month.

There are eight new indicators; the list below only offers the barest of detail and does not include the supplementary information described in the document.

  • Ambulatory care for emergency conditions; the % of A&E attendances for cellulitis and deep vein thrombosis that end in admission.

  • Unplanned re-attendance rate at A&E within 7 days of original attendance.

  • Total time spent …

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  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; not externally peer reviewed.