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Impact of Physician Navigators: Looking beyond productivity metrics and silver bullets
  1. Alexander K Leung1,
  2. Gaurav Puri2,
  3. Eddie Chan2,
  4. Marko Duic2
  1. 1 Department of Family Medicine, Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario, Canada
  2. 2 Emergency Services Program, Southlake Regional Health Centre, Newmarket, Ontario, Canada
  1. Correspondence to Dr Alexander K Leung, Department of Family Medicine, Queen’s University, Kingston, ON K7L 5E9, Canada;{at}

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We thank Mercuri and Mondoux for their commentary1 on our study which introduced Physician Navigators as a novel intervention to improve ED productivity and efficiency.2 The authors expressed concern about the potential trade-off between improved productivity and compromised patient outcomes, and described Physician Navigators as limited to improving timely care with potential negative consequences on the other dimensions of quality. This is a limited approach to understanding the utility of Physician Navigators.

The Province of Ontario started to systematically tracked ED return rates to any hospital within 72 hours of discharge and rates of sentinel diagnoses (ie, missed acute myocardial infarction, subarachnoid hemorrhage, paediatric sepsis) within 7 days of discharge from an ED. Although collection of this data started after our study’s conclusion, our current rates of ED return and sentinel diagnoses …

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  • Contributors All authors have contributed sufficiently to the letter to be included as authors. AKL, GP, EC and MD had full access to all the data in the study and take responsibility for the integrity of the data. AKL, GP, EC and MD were responsible for the accuracy of the data analysis, study concept and design, interpretation of data, and drafting of the letter and critical revision of the letter for important intellectual content.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Ethics approval Southlake Regional Health Centre Research Ethics Board.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.

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