Document Detail

Reducing waiting time for community rehabilitation services: a controlled before and after trial.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  22926459     Owner:  NLM     Status:  Publisher    
OBJECTIVE: To investigate whether a simple alternative (STAT: Specific Timely Appointments for Triage) to the more common approach of managing demand using a waitlist with a triage system could reduce waiting time for a community rehabilitation program (CRP) without adverse impacts on patient care. DESIGN: A prospective controlled before and after trial. Pre and post intervention data were collected for 6 months in 2 consecutive years. STAT was introduced at an intervention site and compared to a control site using a triaged waitlist. SETTING: 2 musculoskeletal CRP teams within a large metropolitan health service. PARTICIPANTS: All patients referred to both sites during periods pre (n=483) and post intervention (n=488). INTERVENTION: Under STAT, clinicians created a specified number of assessment times each week based on average referral numbers and patients were immediately allocated an appointment on referral. MAIN OUTCOMES: The primary outcome was the time from referral to first appointment; secondary outcomes included program duration, quality of life scores (EQ5D), and unplanned hospital admissions. RESULTS: Waiting time reduced from a mean of 17.5 days to 10.0 days (P<.01) at the intervention site, with no significant change at the control site. Intervention site patients were over 3 times more likely to be seen within 7 days than control site patients (odds ratio 3.3, 95% CI 2.2-4.9). Secondary outcomes did not differ significantly between groups. CONCLUSION: A simple alternative to using a triaged waitlist to manage CRP referrals reduced waiting time without adversely affecting care. Results were sustained over 6 months with no additional resources.
Katherine E Harding; Sandra G Leggat; Birgitte Bowers; Maree Stafford; Nicholas F Taylor
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Publication Detail:
Type:  JOURNAL ARTICLE     Date:  2012-8-24
Journal Detail:
Title:  Archives of physical medicine and rehabilitation     Volume:  -     ISSN:  1532-821X     ISO Abbreviation:  Arch Phys Med Rehabil     Publication Date:  2012 Aug 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2012-8-28     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  2985158R     Medline TA:  Arch Phys Med Rehabil     Country:  -    
Other Details:
Languages:  ENG     Pagination:  -     Citation Subset:  -    
Copyright Information:
Copyright © 2012 the American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
La Trobe University, Faculty of Health Sciences, Melbourne Australia; Allied Health Research Office, Eastern Health, Melbourne, Australia.
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