What emergency department wait times do community members want to see displayed?

Katie Walker, Elena Wu, Beatrice Yip, Melanie Stephenson, Anne Loupis

Research output: Contribution to journalLetterOther


Patients and families want to see emergency medicine wait times displayed on the internet and in emergency waiting rooms, but which times do they want to see? In this small face-to-face series of brief interviews in Melbourne, Australia in early 2020; people in parks and university open spaces were asked for their preferences for the definition of the start and finish of emergency department wait times. The majority of the 83 participants were younger, female, multicultural, and urban residents. Most requested the wait time to start as they sat down in the waiting room after triage and registration. Opinions were divided regarding the end of the wait, with some wanting to see an initial person such as a triage doctor, others wanting final results/decisions or discharge time estimates. Few wanted “door-to-provider” times, and none considered remote electronic test ordering by a doctor as the end of their wait. It is possible that emergency wait time visualisation might be more valuable to consumers if several different estimates are displayed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)181-183
Number of pages3
JournalEMA - Emergency Medicine Australasia
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2021

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