April 1, 2013

Harrington ED’s Short Wait Times Are Among Best In U.S.

SOUTHBRIDGE and WEBSTER, Mass., April 1, 2013 -- Harrington HealthCare System's Emergency Departments in both Southbridge and Webster rank among the top 2 percent of all hospitals in the country for short wait times, according to statistics compiled by an influential healthcare publication.

The average wait in the EDs at Harrington Hospital and Harrington HealthCare at Hubbard in Webster was 6 minutes for the first quarter of 2012, the latest period examined by Becker's Hospital Review. The 6-minute wait time put Harrington HealthCare System among the top 49 healthcare systems in the country, or the top 2 percent.

Becker's compiled the data from information Harrington provides each quarter to CMS, the national Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. The time represents the average time patients spent in the Emergency Department before they were seen by a healthcare provider. CMS examines the ED wait times in more than 3,500 hospitals nationwide.

"We've streamlined our processes," said Dr. James Sullivan, Chief of Emergency Medicine at Harrington. "Everyone involved is working at being more efficient. Whenever possible, patients are immediately put in a room and treated. We also utilize a process called ‘swarming' where the physician goes in even as the nurse is doing his or her intake summary. So we do the work at the same time."

"Our short wait times are a testament to all the hard work our staff has been doing to improve the quality of care for our patients," said Edward H. Moore, Harrington President and CEO. "We continually re-examine our processes and procedures with an eye toward safety and improving patient care."

Harrington publishes the current wait time in both its Southbridge and Webster Emergency Departments on its website, www.harringtonhospital.org