The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia is one of the leading children’s hospitals in the country, and was the nation’s first hospital dedicated solely to pediatrics. The main campus in University City is home to 527 beds, and admits 28,000 children each year. In the emergency and outpatient departments, 1.17 million children are seen annually.
Long wait times are assumed to be a necessary part of the process in hospitals and emergency rooms. Once a patient enters the emergency room, they expect to wait for a bed, wait to be seen by a nurse or doctor, and wait to be admitted to an inpatient unit (if necessary). The entire process takes hours and affects the health of the patient as well as the happiness of the entire family. From the time that a patient is deemed medically ready for transfer from the emergency room to an inpatient unit, there are many steps that the hospital staff must undergo. These include assigning a bed within the inpatient unit, conversations and handoffs between both nurses and doctors, and the cleaning of the room and bed. This process has many bottlenecks, and during this time, the patient is often left in the dark regarding their expected wait time until admittance.
Our project aims to understand the factors that affect the total time from when a patient in the emergency room is ready to be transferred until he or she is admitted to the appropriate inpatient unit. Using our understanding of these internal and external factors, we predict the wait time and provide a technological solution, via a website, for nurses to use. By digitizing this process, the nurses can move through this process faster as well as track their patients more effectively.