To the Editor: Australia is in the process of making the most important change to its health care system since the implementation of Medicare.1 We agree with Cameron and Cooke that there are important lessons for Australia from the implementation of the 4-hour rule in the United Kingdom.2 As in Robert Zemeckis’s 1985 movie classic,
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Lessons from the 4-hour standard in England for Australia
Roberto Forero, Geoff D McDonnell, Sally M McCarthy, Peter Nugus, Jeffrey Braithwaite, Kenneth M Hillman, Daniel M Fatovich, David Mountain, Frank F Daly, Gerard J Fitzgerald and Drew B Richardson
Med J Aust 2011; 194 (5): 268.
Roberto Forero, Senior Research Fellow1
Geoff D McDonnell, Simulation Research Fellow2
Sally M McCarthy, Director of Emergency Medicine3
Peter Nugus, Research Fellow4
Jeffrey Braithwaite, Director4
Kenneth M Hillman, Director1
Daniel M Fatovich, Professor of Emergency Medicine5
David Mountain, Emergency Physician and Associate Professor6
Frank F Daly, Professor of Emergency Medicine7
Gerard J Fitzgerald, Professor of Public Health8
Drew B Richardson, Professor of Emergency Medicine9
1 Simpson Centre for Health Services Research, Australian Institute of Health Innovation, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW.
2 Centre for Health Informatics, Australian Institute of Health Innovation, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW.
4 Centre for Clinical Governance Research in Health, Australian Institute of Health Innovation, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW.
Kirby T. Moving Australia’s health-care system into the 21st century. Lancet 2010; 376: 219-220.
Cameron PA, Cooke MW. Lessons from the 4-hour standard in England for Australia [editorial]. Med J Aust 2011; 194: 4-5.
United Kingdom Department of Health Urgent and Emergency Care. A&E clinical quality indicators. Data definitions. http://www.dh.gov.uk/prod_consum_dh/groups/dh_digitalassets/@dh/@en/@ps/documents/digitalasset/dh_122892.pdf (accessed Feb 2011).
Forero R, Hillman KM, McCarthy SM, et al. Access block and ED overcrowding. Emerg Med Australas 2010; 22: 119-135.
Paul SA, Reddy MC, DeFlitch CJ. A systematic review of simulation studies investigating emergency department overcrowding. Simulation 2010; 86: 559-571.
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