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SUHCAT study, part 5: Comparison of staff and chiefs’ perceptions of emergency department quality in Catalonia

Jacob J, Gené E, Alonso G, Rimbau P, Zorrilla J, Casarramona F, Netto C, Sánchez P , Hernández R, Escalada X, Miró O

Societat Catalana de Medicina d’Urgències i Emergències (SoCMUE), Barcelona, Spain.

Objective. To study the perceptions of Catalan Society of Emergency Medicine (SoCMUE) members who staff hospital emergency departments regarding measures taken to cope with overcrowding, staff rest areas, and staff size.
Methods. Descriptive cross-sectional analysis of a survey sent to SoCMUE members. We compared opinions expressed by physicians and nurses in this survey and also compared them to opinions expressed by heads of departments in prior SUHCAT studies.
Results. Responses were received from 363 members who worked in hospital departments. More nurses than physicians expressed the opinion that ambulance unloading was habitually blocked (P=.045), patients were being redirected (P<.001), and staffing was inadequate (P=.007). When the results of our SoCMUE survey were compared to those
of the earlier SUHCAT surveys of department chiefs, we found that more SoCMUE members believed that measures to cope with overcrowding are frequently applied, quality in rest areas is poorer, and staffing is inadequate.
Conclusion. Physicians and nurses who are members of SoCMUE and work in hospital emergency departments have different views on measures taken to cope with overcrowding, quality of rest areas, and staff size. In addition, the SoCMUE members’ opinions differed from those of respondents in prior SUHCAT studies.

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