Statistics from Altmetric.com
A concern among ED service providers is that patient volumes and acuity are outpacing resources, prompting them to find ways to improve efficiency to meet service demands. In this issue of the Journal, Leung and colleagues1 introduce physician navigators as a novel strategy to increase emergency physician efficiency at a regional hospital in Ontario. The role of the navigator is to provide the ED physician with clerical support and assist in other organisational tasks, and their use led to an improvement in patient turnover at the study centre.
The results of this study are intuitive. A physician is limited in what he or she can do at any one time, and thus, some tasks must be completed serially. The availability of a navigator means that the physician can delegate non-clinical tasks so that he or she can effectively do two things at once. Thus, improved time-related outcomes are in keeping with the clinical process change instituted in this study. However, the physician is only part of the barrier to ED flow. Delays in registration and triage, or in other programmes such as radiology, laboratory and inpatient units may also …
↵ i The HQO is a government mandated agency that provides advice to healthcare providers in the Province, including the hospital where the Leung et al.1 study took place.
Contributors Both MM and SEM contributed to drafting the commentary. Both reviewed it prior to submission.
Competing interests None declared.
Provenance and peer review Commissioned; internally peer reviewed.
If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.