Consequently, any conflicts over the development of new healthcare roles moved from the ‘ideological’, to consideration of measurable outcomes, which now provided the basis for decisions. In EDs, the new professional role of the ENP, a specialised nurse for the purpose of taking up mundane tasks and releasing time for doctors, was developed to strengthen Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical the focus on the target. These nurses were trained to act autonomously, based on protocols, in health promotion, education, assessment, diagnosis
and interpretation of X-Rays, while they can treat and prescribe medications for minor illnesses and injuries [58,59]. They are now considered an effective solution for reducing wait times, particularly in overcrowded urban EDs with high volumes of low acuity patients and physician
shortages . Most of the interviewees in our study thought ENPs made an invaluable contribution to the reduction of target breaches. We have already seen how the focus on the target as a means of addressing the chronic problem of ED wait times led to the replacement of one big queue, in which Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical every patient was prioritised, with a smaller, more manageable, and less visible queue. In conjunction with the new system, an added benefit of this change was that these patients could have more information regarding their position in this queue which “does help them”. For example, patients Vorinostat waiting could be informed about how Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical many people were in front of them. EDAs at the Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical reception, while they could not know precisely how long a patient would have to wait, could look up the queue in EDIS and reassure these patients that they were “still on the system, everything is in time order” and that they would not “get missed”. On the other hand, this was only for those patients who are accepted into these queues. Just like the clinicians who managed
their trajectories, patients were subjects of the Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical same target. The target acted as the objective justification for exclusions. Patients, whose medical condition did not meet the profile of the ED attendee, were referred to other services (e.g. GPs, minor injury units and walk-in centres). “Before, we couldn’t have sent anybody away, first we didn’t have that sort of authority to send people away, so it was like well…you’re not important to be seen, so everyone needs to be seen before you, so if you’re waiting here 6 hours that’s how long you will wait” (Clinician 5). For those patients who had successfully managed to navigate themselves through the maze of the healthcare system and had been given a ‘boarding pass’ to the ED, a better clinical experience and quality of care was “pledged” . This was evident from the fact that almost all of our participants stated that they would not want to go back to the previous clinical reality of EDs with “doctors sitting on the floor doing assessments” and patients “who had been waiting two days to get to a ward”.