RC hospital delivers care in 30 minutes or less

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A hospital in Rockland County introduced a system that reduced wait time for patients in the emergency room to 30 minutes or less.

"One of the biggest complaints we used to get was a long wait when patients arrive to be seen by a physician," says Dr. Oscar Marcilla, director of emergency medicine at Nyack Hospital.

Marcilla says the average national wait time in an ER is 65 minutes. At Nyack Hospital, wait time was reduced to 17 minutes after the hospital installed an electronic medical records system, which eliminated the need to fill out paper forms.

"So when the patient walks in, we get their name, date of birth and what their chief complaint is," Marcilla says.

All the patients at Nyack Hospital come directly into the ER, and the triage occurs at bedside rather than in the waiting rooms, which shortens the process by another 30 minutes.

Quicker service, Marcilla says, also addressed another problem common to many emergency rooms - anxiety and anger that builds up in patients and family members. Marcilla says a calmer atmosphere in the ER makes treatment easier for everyone.

The head of emergency medicine at Nyack Hospital says the main concern revolves around the fact that a growing number of patients are losing their jobs and their medical insurance. With the ER becoming the medical office of last resort, the 30-minute service standard could be strained.

For an interview about Nyack Hospital?s national award for short ER wait times, go to Channel 612 on your digital cable box and select iO Extra.

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