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Article
Solutions to emergency department 'boarding' and crowding are underused and may need to be legislated
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  • Niels Rathlev, MD, Baystate Health
Document Type
Article, Peer-reviewed
Publication Date
8-1-2012
Abstract

The practice of keeping admitted patients on stretchers in hospital emergency department hallways for hours or days, called "boarding," causes emergency department crowding and can be harmful to patients. Boarding increases patients' morbidity, lengths of hospital stay, and mortality. Strategies that optimize bed management reduce boarding by improving the efficiency of hospital patient flow, but these strategies are grossly underused. Convincing hospital leaders of the value of such solutions, and educating patients to advocate for such changes, may promote improvements. If these strategies do not work, legislation may be required to effect meaningful change.

Citation Information
Rabin E, Kocher K, McClelland M, Pines J, Hwang U, Rathlev N, Asplin B, Trueger NS, Weber E. Solutions to emergency department 'boarding' and crowding are underused and may need to be legislated Health Aff (Millwood) 2012 Aug;31(8):1757-66.