Imagine that you are the CEO of Springfield General Hospital, a 200-bed community hospital on the west coast. At your Board meeting this month, you have several uninvited guests: employers and concerned citizens. The owner of a small industry in your town with 200 employees speaks for them, but they are all bringing the same message. “We are proud of our hospital. You do a lot of things right here, but the waiting time to see a doctor in this emergency room is completely out of hand. We have employees missing a whole day of work to be treated, even for minor problems. There has to be a better way, and we expect you to take care of this! Otherwise, frankly, we are better off sending our people to City Hospital 20 miles down the road where they will be taken care of within 30 minutes. I’m sure you’ve heard their radio advertisements about that. Even with the driving time, we’d be better off than losing an entire work day waiting for treatment here.”
Discuss procedures to evaluate and address the waiting time issue in your emergency room. What key factors will you consider, and who will you involve in the process?