Failing to achieve hospital-wide patient flow — the right care, in the right place, at the right time — puts patients at risk for suboptimal care and potential harm. It also increases the burden on clinicians and hospital staff and can accelerate burnout. Yet, while many understand the problem, they often lack the comprehensive strategies to address it.
Achieving hospital-wide patient flow, and ultimately improving outcomes and the experience of care for patients, requires an appreciation of the hospital as an interconnected, interdependent system of care. It also requires strong leadership; in fact, the role of executive leaders is critical for success.
The culmination of approximately two decades of IHI’s research, innovation, and learning about hospital-wide patient flow, this whitePaper guides leaders and quality improvement teams through an in-depth examination of a systems view of patient flow, theories for improvement, and high-leverage strategies and interventions to achieve hospital-wide patient flow.