A new program in Moore Medical Center’s Emergency Department is helping patients get treated faster and enabling medical professionals to see more patients.
The program, called Fast Track, works by expediting care to patients with minor complaints, said Nick Stremble, RN, emergency department manager. It’s similar to an urgent care center but housed and staffed within the accredited Emergency Department.
The type of injuries or illness that patients in the Fast Track have range from fevers, coughs and sore throats to small lacerations, muscle strains and minor broken bones, Stremble said.
“By caring for these patients separately from the patients in the main Emergency Department, we are able to better focus medical and nursing care, resulting in more thorough and individualized care,” Stremble said.
The Fast Track is open from 3 p.m. to 11 p.m. daily at Moore Medical Center’s ED. The program increases the capacity of the ED from 11 beds to 16 beds during that time frame. So far, the program has been so successful patients are even calling ahead to see what time the Fast Track opens and the ED has seen a spike in the number of patients arriving around 3 p.m., Stremble said.
“The Fast Track program has really worked well from day one,” Stremble said. “The response from both the patients and the staff has been excellent. Patients have been very pleased to have their needs met in a way that has them in and out of the ED, most often in under an hour from triage to discharge.”
Before the Fast Track opened, the overall length of stay for all patients seen in Moore’s Emergency Department was 113 minutes. In November with the Fast Track program that number has decreased to 94 minutes, Stremble said.
Another example of the program’s success is the percentage of patients who check in through registration, but leave before seeing a physician. This percentage went from 3.5 percent to less then 1 percent since the opening of the Fast Track.
Ryan Gehrig, vice president at Norman Regional Health System and chief administrative officer of Moore Medical Center, said the Fast Track is just one way the hospital is meeting the demands of its growing community.
“Moore is expanding on what seems like a daily basis and our community members need access to quality medical care quickly. The Fast Track enables our patients to be seen faster and lets us see more patients without reducing the high level of quality care with which we treat each patient,” Gehrig said.