Columbia Hospitals Leave Patients Waiting Longer Than Average

2 years 6 months 3 weeks ago November 07, 2013 Nov 7, 2013 Thursday, November 07 2013 Thursday, November 07, 2013 10:18:33 AM CST in News
By: Eric Hilt, KOMU 8 Reporter

COLUMBIA - According to information from the federal government, patients at emergency departments in Columbia are waiting longer than patients at most hospitals across the nation. (Click here to see wait times on an interactive map.)

One of those patients is Anthony Spates, who went to the University Hospital emergency department when he broke his finger in September. Spates said he waited five hours to see a health care professional. 

"My hand was in excruciating pain," Spates said. He would later need to have surgery on his finger. Spates isn't the only Mid-Missourian facing long waits in the emergency department. 

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services collects data from emergency departments across the U.S. One of the statistics it collects is the "average time patients spent in the emergency department before they were seen by a health care professional," also called the "door-to-doctor" wait time. The national average for the "door-to-doctor" wait time is 28 minutes and the Missouri average is 29 minutes, but two Columbia hospitals are close to double the national average. 

Boone Hospital Center has an average emergency department "door-to-doctor" wait time of 52 minutes, 24 minutes longer than the national average. 

When KOMU 8 News asked emergency department manager Beth Eidson about have a wait time almost double the national average, she could not confidently say she knew about the statistic. 

"I think we're aware of all of our data," Eidson said.

University Hospital has a slightly lower average wait time, but is still 12 minutes longer than the national average with an average of 40 minutes. 

University Hospital Chair of Emergency Medicine, Marc Borenstein, said those statistics don't accurately show what happens in the University Hospital emergency department waiting room. 

"The workup actually starts up in minutes, and we can administer pain management," Borenstein said. 

But Spates said when he was there, he was declined pain medicine while he was in the waiting room. 

"I asked the nurse for any medicine I could possible have to get me over until I was seen, and they informed me that I would not be able to have any medicine," Spates said. 

Jeff Ehmke at Capitol Region Medical Center said the long wait times can lead to complications in patients' injuries and can hurt hospitals in the long run. 

"Reducing wait times is beneficial for two reasons, number one it gets the patient in to be seen sooner, which is the goal of an emergency department. But the second reason is that it's going to increase the amount of reimbursement that hospitals are being paid as a result from that visit," Ehmke said.

To see how hospitals stack up in other statistical categories, visit the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Hospital Compare website. To see wait times for hospitals around the state, look at the interactive map below. 

 

 

More News

Grid
List
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Regulations aimed at helping companies such as Uber and Lyft expand in Missouri died in the... More >>
41 minutes ago May 30, 2016 May 30, 2016 Monday, May 30 2016 Monday, May 30, 2016 12:41:00 PM CDT in News
HAVANA - Cuba formally accepted a 20-ton shipment of rice processed in southeast Missouri Monday. Gov. Jay Nixon announced the... More >>
1 hour ago May 30, 2016 May 30, 2016 Monday, May 30 2016 Monday, May 30, 2016 12:21:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - As an event promoter for Off Track Events, Colin LaVaute has planned plenty of races in his work... More >>
10 hours ago May 30, 2016 May 30, 2016 Monday, May 30 2016 Monday, May 30, 2016 3:01:00 AM CDT in News
COLUMBIA — Over 600 people in south Columbia experienced power outages around 10 p.m. according to Columbia Water and Light.... More >>
13 hours ago May 29, 2016 May 29, 2016 Sunday, May 29 2016 Sunday, May 29, 2016 11:44:00 PM CDT in News
BOONE COUNTY - Flooding along the banks of the Missouri River caused a change of plans for some Mid-Missouri residents... More >>
19 hours ago May 29, 2016 May 29, 2016 Sunday, May 29 2016 Sunday, May 29, 2016 6:02:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - This year's Memorial Day parade will take a different route through downtown Columbia in an effort to limit... More >>
21 hours ago May 29, 2016 May 29, 2016 Sunday, May 29 2016 Sunday, May 29, 2016 3:38:00 PM CDT in News
BUCKHORN – The annual Mid-America Freedom Rally (MAFR) held an Honor Guard Ceremony Sunday afternoon. The event is a Memorial... More >>
22 hours ago May 29, 2016 May 29, 2016 Sunday, May 29 2016 Sunday, May 29, 2016 3:02:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA — Columbia Parks and Recreation finished renovations to the Lake of the Woods Golf Course last Friday. Attracting... More >>
22 hours ago May 29, 2016 May 29, 2016 Sunday, May 29 2016 Sunday, May 29, 2016 2:40:00 PM CDT in News
TIPTON - Authorities are investigating a shooting that left a 19-year-old dead in Tipton late Saturday night. According to... More >>
23 hours ago May 29, 2016 May 29, 2016 Sunday, May 29 2016 Sunday, May 29, 2016 1:51:00 PM CDT in News
MOBERLY – Mid-Missourians could immerse themselves in history this Memorial Day weekend at a World War II reenactment in Moberly.... More >>
1 day ago May 28, 2016 May 28, 2016 Saturday, May 28 2016 Saturday, May 28, 2016 7:39:00 PM CDT in Continuous News
CENTRALIA — A Memorial Day display in Centralia is one that turns heads as people pass by. The "Avenue... More >>
1 day ago May 28, 2016 May 28, 2016 Saturday, May 28 2016 Saturday, May 28, 2016 5:26:00 PM CDT in News
FULTON - VFW Post 2657 celebrated Memorial Day with the sale of “Buddy” Poppies. VFW members and volunteers stood... More >>
1 day ago May 28, 2016 May 28, 2016 Saturday, May 28 2016 Saturday, May 28, 2016 3:08:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - The 28th annual Salute to Veterans Celebration and Air Show took flight Saturday at the Columbia Regional Airport.... More >>
2 days ago May 28, 2016 May 28, 2016 Saturday, May 28 2016 Saturday, May 28, 2016 1:08:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri lawmakers took steps this year to address the growing number of drug overdoses, but health... More >>
2 days ago May 28, 2016 May 28, 2016 Saturday, May 28 2016 Saturday, May 28, 2016 12:54:44 PM CDT in News
BUTLER (AP) — A western Missouri community is grieving after the death of a spunky 12-year-old who was killed in... More >>
2 days ago May 28, 2016 May 28, 2016 Saturday, May 28 2016 Saturday, May 28, 2016 11:41:14 AM CDT in News
COLUMBIA – While many convenience stores are working extra hours to keep up with record-breaking Memorial Day travel predictions ,... More >>
2 days ago May 28, 2016 May 28, 2016 Saturday, May 28 2016 Saturday, May 28, 2016 11:02:00 AM CDT in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A Kansas City woman who pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in the death of her 2-year-old... More >>
2 days ago May 27, 2016 May 27, 2016 Friday, May 27 2016 Friday, May 27, 2016 11:10:23 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA — A 22-year-old man was taken to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries Friday after he was shot twice.... More >>
2 days ago May 27, 2016 May 27, 2016 Friday, May 27 2016 Friday, May 27, 2016 10:52:00 PM CDT in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 84°
2pm 87°
3pm 87°
4pm 87°
5pm 86°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

12:00p
2016 French Open
3:00p
The Dr. Oz Show
4:00p
Dr. Phil
1:00p
Maury
2:00p
Rules of Engagement
2:30p
Rules of Engagement

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
2016 Stanley Cup Final
7:00p
Memorial Day
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld