Urgent Matters serves as a dissemination vehicle for innovative strategies on emergency department (ED) patient flow and quality and acts as a central resource for hospital staff to discover field-tested initiatives that can be tailored to their organization.
Our multidisciplinary audience is engaged through webinars, a searchable collection of ED improvement tools and strategies, an annual meeting, podcast series, and blog.
Originally founded by the Robert Woods Johnson Foundation, it is currently housed within The Ronald Reagan Institute of Emergency Medicine at George Washington University School of Medicine. Urgent Matters started in 2002 as a ten-hospital collaborative Learning Network that provided breakthrough research on patient flow measurement and improvement. The participating hospitals implemented rigorous performance measures, assessed current processes, and used techniques of rapid cycle change to improve ED throughput and output, ultimately finding that overcrowding can in large part be addressed through better capacity and patient flow management with a highly structured approach using mainly existing resources.Our second collaborative included six hospitals that worked together to identify, develop and implement strategies to improve patient flow and reducing ED crowding. Since, 2002, Urgent Matters has been a virtual network of emergency care stakeholders.