CEO Message

Survey on Discharge Delays Vital to CHA’s Advocacy Efforts

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Last week, CEOs should have received an email asking for help with an important CHA survey on discharge delays. In case you missed it — we need your response please by June 30.

Every day, you see the impact these discharge delays have on timely access to care. Patients wind up being hospitalized longer than medically necessary while emergency departments back up with people awaiting an open bed, delaying ambulance crews from transferring patients to hospitals. It’s a similar scenario at your psychiatric hospitals, which are also seeing significant delays in discharges, limiting a facility’s ability to admit new patients experiencing a behavioral health crisis. 

However, while CHA frequently raises the issue with various state and federal agencies, there is little recognition of the scope and severity of the delays and a lack of urgency to address them. At the same time, CHA is limited by a lack of up-to-date comprehensive information on the frequency, scope, and nature of discharge delays.

For the survey, we are seeking data on three distinct areas — emergency departments (EDs), general acute care hospitals (excluding psychiatric units), and acute psychiatric hospitals/acute psychiatric units. There is a set of questions for each area — the services available at your hospital will determine if you need to complete one, two, or all three sections. It may be helpful to consult your director of case management to determine who is best suited to respond. CHA has also developed guidance that may be useful when answering the questions. 

This is your chance to share your data on the challenges that your hospitals are facing and I encourage you to answer the survey, which should take about one hour to complete. Thank you in advance for your input and engagement on this important issue as we continue to respond to the longstanding problem of discharge delays and tailor our advocacy efforts to help ensure the preservation of acute hospital services.