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Tracking Discharge Delays: Critical First Step Toward Mitigating Process Breakdowns and Inefficiencies

Holland, Diane E. PhD, RN; Pacyna, Joel E. MA; Gillard, Kristine L. MAN, RN; Carter, Lisa C. MA, RN

doi: 10.1097/NCQ.0000000000000141

This article reports on the development and evaluation of a mechanism designed for real-time tracking of discharge delays by bedside clinicians and the reporting of delays in a manner amenable to action. During the implementation phase, delay time totaled 23.6 days for 114 patients affected by a delay. More than one-half of delays (61.4%) occurred for patients whose discharge disposition was home to self-care.

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Division of Nursing Research (Dr Holland), Biomedical Ethics Program (Mr Pacyna), and Department of Nursing (Mss Gillard and Carter), Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota.

Correspondence: Diane E. Holland, PhD, RN, Division of Nursing Research, Mayo Clinic, 200 First St SW, Rochester, MN 55905 (

The authors report no conflicts of interest or funding.

Supplemental digital content is available for this article. Direct URL citation appears in the printed text and is provided in the HTML and PDF versions of this article on the journal's Web site (

Accepted for publication: May 10, 2015

Published ahead of print: July 10, 2015

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