For a patient experiencing symptoms of a heart attack, an emergency department (ED) visit can be lengthy and filled with anxiety and worry. Tests needed to prove or disprove symptoms as an actual heart attack require significant time, and symptoms must be monitored. However, a long wait in the ED for test results can greatly impact patient satisfaction and comfort.
South Nassau Communities Hospital in Oceanside developed an innovative "short-stay unit" for these patients within its Center for Cardiovascular Health, where ED patients with cardiac symptoms stay in a comfortable and calm setting under the experienced observation of the cardiology department rather than in the bustling ED.
This practice has resulted in reducing unnecessary admissions, reduced healthcare costs, and increased satisfaction for patients, staff, and physicians. As a result of this program, the hospital's one-day stays for chest pain have been reduced by 61% from 2012 to 2013.