Impact of Admission and Discharge Peak Times on Hospital Overcrowding
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The ability of hospital staff to get a patient to the right bed at the right time is dependent on bed occupancy, and is a key issue in all acute hospitals. This paper seeks to identify the impact of admission and discharge timing on hospital occupancy with reference to the peak in daily admissions and discharges. Patient admissions data from 23 Queensland public hospitals was classified into categories based on the relative timing of daily admission and discharge curves. We found statistically significant differences in mean and peak occupancy and patient length of stay between categories (one-way univariate ANOVA p 0.0001). The results support early patient discharge initiatives to reduce hospital occupancy rates.
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