Criteria nurse-led discharge


New criteria/protocol for the nurse-led discharge of elective endoscopy patients in a North West UK tertiary referral centre — audit of impact on patient flow and experience and team competence/confidence.

This project has helped to improve patient flow through an acute hospital by facilitating more timely assessment and discharge of elective patients, allowing patients to be discharged as soon as they are ready and thus improving their experience during their admission.

Historically patients admitted to medical beds for elective endoscopy were discharged by the medical team. Due to ward activity and priorities medical staff were not always available to review and discharge patients early in the working day. This often disrupted patient flow by causing delays to the discharge, and consequently delays to the admission of new elective patients and the transfer of acute patients from elsewhere in the trust. Using the Department of Health (2004) and The Agency for clinical innovation (2016) toolkits for criteria-led discharge we developed and agreed local protocols for specific patients and ran a comprehensive training/competency package for senior nurses to enable a new 'Nurse criteria-led discharge service'.

Also included in the poster is a summary of the project objectives, an example of the criteria developed with our consultants and the quantitative and qualitative audit measures and outcomes including staff and patient feedback.

Related resources

Rapid improvement guide: setting the clinical criteria and expected date of discharge

Improvement guide


Complex recovery assessment and consultation team: ensuring patients with complex needs are not stranded in the system

Shared learning


General surgery report: how to improve clinical quality and efficiency

Transparency data


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