Located 40 minutes from the coast in Kinston, N.C., UNC Lenoir Health Care is a not-for-profit hospital offering general medicine and advanced, specialized care including cardiology, pulmonology, oncology, radiology and urology to the local and surrounding communities.

UNC Lenoir treats approximately 44,500 patients per year in the 17-bed emergency department (ED). The ED averages a low to mid-range patient acuity level and utilizes a systematic approach to daily physician and APC coverage.

  • Hospital Beds: 216-beds
  • ED Beds: 17- beds
  • Annual Volume: 45,000
  • Low-mid acuity
  • Daily Physician Coverage: 24-33-hours
  • Daily APC Coverage: 30-hours
  • Practice Size: 6 physicians and 6 APCs

The Challenge

The UNC Lenoir ED was experiencing high LWBS rates as a result of operational inefficiencies.

The Approach

Several key strategies were implemented to improve department operations and in return decrease LWBS rates.

  • Establish dedicated medical director and core clinician group
  • Utilize systematic, efficiency-based scheduling
  • Simplify EHR work-flow, tools and order processes
  • Align ED-nursing and ED-hospital teams
  • Implement regular, open communication and feedback

The Result

UNC Lenoir decreased LWBS over a five-year period from 5.7% in April 2013 to 0.2% in April 2018.