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Emergency Medicine International
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 576259, 4 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2014/576259
Research Article

Factors Associated with Overcrowded Emergency Rooms in Thailand: A Medical School Setting

1Department of Emergency Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Ramathibodi Hospital, Mahidol University, Bangkok 10400, Thailand
2Department of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Khon Kaen University, Khon Kaen 40002, Thailand
3The Research and Training Center for Enhancing Quality of Life of Working-Age People, Khon Kaen University, Khon Kaen 40002, Thailand

Received 18 July 2014; Revised 10 September 2014; Accepted 14 September 2014; Published 29 September 2014

Academic Editor: Robert W. Derlet

Copyright © 2014 Arrug Wibulpolprasert et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Background. Overcrowding in the emergency department (ED) is a significant public health problem in the US, Europe, and Asia. Factors associated with prolonged length of stay in Thailand are still limited. Methods. This study was conducted at the ED, Ramathibodi Hospital, Mahidol University, Thailand, during July 2011. We selected 300 patients (5.77%) from a total of 5,202 who visited the ED during the study period by simple random sampling. Charts were retrospectively reviewed baseline characteristics, clinical factors, and duration of ED stay. Multivariate logistic regression analyses were performed to identify independent factors for an ED stay more than or equal to 8 hours. Results. We excluded 33 patients (11%) due to incomplete data or stroke fast track enrollment. In total, 267 patients were in the analysis and 53 patients (19.85%) had an ED visit time more than or equal to 8 hours. The number of rounds of blood testing and the type of insurance were associated with prolonged ED stay of more than or equal to 8 hours. Conclusion. ED physicians may need to consider appropriate investigations to shorten the length of stay in the ED.