STAT—How to Make Every Minute Count

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Several years ago, our community teaching hospital identified a need to improve patient care by streamlining the study performance workflow and hastening communication of critical study results to clinicians. “STAT” studies are a carefully selected subset of imaging studies that are prioritized due to their utility in assessing for emergent conditions including cerebrovascular accidents, pneumoperitoneum, and cardiac arrest. We describe the multiyear process of data collection, analysis, and departmental and hospital-wide system changes that significantly improved result times. Relatively simple policy changes, such as the distribution of STAT beepers to the team members and creating color-coded worklists, drastically reduced delays.

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