Reducing the number of unnecessary hospital transfers is a national priority because Emergency Department (ED)  transfers can result in unnecessary diagnostic tests and interventions, adverse events, increased health care expenditures, and physical and emotional discomfort for both patients/residents and their families. It is estimated that anywhere from 30-70 percent of ED visits are potentially avoidable.

The Great Plains Quality Innovation Network team created a Reducing Avoidable Emergency Department Visits & Hospital Toolkit which illustrates a quality improvement process to reduce the frequency of avoidable ED visits and hospitalization. As part of a QAPI Performance Improvement Project, this toolkit can be used in all care settings and provides your team with actionable steps to decrease the number of hospital transfers.

Access the Toolkit

The Toolkit includes the following components:

  • Root Cause Analysis: Review and select which factors apply
  • Set a Goal: Specific, Measurable, Relevant, Time-bound, Inclusive and
  • Strategies for Improvement: Analyze barriers discovered during RCA and
    select strategies to address them
  • Measure Your Success: Collect and analyze data for specific measures
  • Celebrate Your Success: Promote success and express appreciation when
    goals are met

To assist in organizing and documenting your quality improvement project, utilize Great Plains QIN’s Quality Improvement Process Guide. Contact a member of our team for assistance or additional information.

Friday Focus GearsThe Great Plains QIN Team hosted a series of educational sessions on this topic throughout February as part of our Friday Focus 4 Health Series.

Access the presentations and recordings from these sessions here.

  1. Reducing Avoidable Emergency Department Visits
  2. Communication During Hand-Off’s
  3. Communication Strategies
  4. Infections, Falls, Medications, Success Measurement & Celebrating