Validity of Wait Time Complaints and Effect of Trainee Presence in an Ophthalmic Emergency Department

Clin Ophthalmol. 2022 Feb 27:16:551-556. doi: 10.2147/OPTH.S352133. eCollection 2022.


Purpose: Press Ganey (PG) surveys can provide a more comprehensive evaluation of specific patient complaints through input of comments. In this paper, we evaluate the validity of wait time complaints submitted via PG surveys in an ophthalmic emergency department (ED) and determine the effect of trainee presence on total time spent in the ED and negative PG comments.

Materials and methods: This was a retrospective study evaluating PG reports for ED demographic, diagnostic, visit time and trainee involvement trends.

Results: Females made up 48.0% (4465) of overall ED patients yet submitted 62.8% (98) of the negative comments on PG surveys. More than a quarter (27.7%) of the negative comments pertained to wait time. Patient-reported times spent in the ED were significantly longer than actual total ED times (p < 0.001). Both reported and actual total ED times were significantly longer for patients who submitted wait time negative comments than those with other complaints (p < 0.001 vs p = 0.039, respectively). Patients seen by residents spent a significantly longer time in the ED than those seen by non-resident providers (p = 0.015), although self-reported total ED times did not differ significantly in these patients (p = 0.467).

Conclusion: Patients submitting complaints about wait time and those seen by treatment teams including residents spent a significantly longer time in the ED. Although PG survey respondents are not representative of the overall ED patient population, this highlights the need for academic institutions to seek methods to maximize efficiency in patient care without compromising trainee education.

Keywords: fellow; patient satisfaction; resident; workflow.

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