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Australian Health Performance Framework: PI 2.5.7–Waiting times for emergency department care: percentage of patients whose length of emergency department stay is 4 hours or less, 2019

Identifying and definitional attributes

Metadata item type:Help on this termIndicator
Indicator type:Help on this termIndicator
Short name:Help on this termAHPF PI 2.5.7–Waiting times for emergency department care: percentage of patients whose length of emergency department stay is 4 hours or less, 2019
METeOR identifier:Help on this term715382
Registration status:Help on this termHealth, Standard 09/04/2020
Description:Help on this term

For all patients presenting to a public hospital emergency department (including publicly funded emergency departments), the percentage of presentations where the length of the emergency department stay is 4 hours or less.

Indicator set:Help on this termAustralian Health Performance Framework, 2019 Health, Standard 09/04/2020

Collection and usage attributes

Computation description:Help on this term

See Non-admitted patient emergency department service episode—triage category, code N for description of each triage category.

An emergency department stay is the period between when a patient presents at an emergency department, and when that person is recorded as having physically departed the emergency department (regardless of whether they were admitted to the hospital, referred to another hospital, were discharged, or left at their own risk). It includes any time spent as an admitted patient in the emergency department, but not in ‘short-stay units’.

The scope for calculation of this indicator is all hospitals reporting to the Non-admitted patient emergency department care (NAPEDC) national minimum data set (NMDS) 2018–19 or NAPEDC national best endeavours data set (NBEDS) 2018–19.

Calculation includes all presentations with a physical departure date/time in the reporting period, including records where the presentation date/time is prior to the reporting period. Invalid records are excluded from the numerator and denominator. Invalid records are records for which:

  • Length of stay < 0
  • Presentation date or time is missing
  • Physical departure date or time is missing.

Calculation includes presentations with any Type of visit to emergency department.

Recording departure time

Emergency department (ED) stay length is the amount of time, measured in minutes, between when a patient presents at an emergency department, and when the patient physically departs the emergency department. It is calculated as per the guidelines included in the NAPEDC NMDS 2018–19 or NAPEDC NBEDS 2018–19:

  • If the patient is subsequently admitted to this hospital (either short stay unit, hospital-in-the-home or non-emergency department hospital ward), then record the time the patient leaves the emergency department to go to the admitted patient facility.
    • Patients admitted to any other ward or bed within the emergency department have not physically departed the emergency department until they leave the emergency department.
    • If the patient is admitted and subsequently dies before leaving the emergency department, then record the time the body was removed from the emergency department.
  • If the service episode is completed without the patient being admitted, then record the time the patient's emergency department non-admitted clinical care ended.
  • If the service episode is completed and the patient is referred to another hospital for admission, then record the time the patient leaves the emergency department.
  • If the patient did not wait, then record the time the patient leaves the emergency department or was first noticed as having left.
  • If the patient leaves at their own risk, then record the time the patient leaves the emergency department or was first noticed as having left.
  • If the patient died in the emergency department, then record the time the body was removed from the emergency department.
  • If the patient was dead on arrival, then record the time the body was removed from the emergency department. If an emergency department physician certified the death of the patient outside the emergency department, then record the time the patient was certified dead.

Presentation time and date are the time and date of the first recorded contact with an emergency department staff member. The first recorded contact can be the commencement of the clerical registration or triage process, whichever happens first.

Analysis by state and territory is based on location of service.

Presented as a percentage.

Computation:Help on this term

100 x (Numerator ÷ Denominator)

Numerator:Help on this term

Number of emergency department presentations where emergency department stay length is less than or equal to four hours.

Numerator data elements:Help on this term
Data Element / Data SetEmergency department stay—presentation time, hhmm
Data Source
National non-admitted patient emergency department care database
NMDS / DSS
Non-admitted patient emergency department care NMDS 2018-19
Guide for use

Data source type: Administrative by-product data


Data Element / Data SetEmergency department stay—presentation date, DDMMYYYY
Data Source
National non-admitted patient emergency department care database
NMDS / DSS
Non-admitted patient emergency department care NMDS 2018-19
Guide for use

Data source type: Administrative by-product data


Data Element / Data SetEmergency department stay—physical departure date, DDMMYYYY
Data Source
National non-admitted patient emergency department care database
NMDS / DSS
Non-admitted patient emergency department care NMDS 2018-19
Guide for use

Data source type: Administrative by-product data


Data Element / Data SetEmergency department stay—physical departure time, hhmm
Data Source
National non-admitted patient emergency department care database
NMDS / DSS
Non-admitted patient emergency department care NMDS 2018-19
Guide for use

Data source type: Administrative by-product data


Data Element / Data SetEmergency department stay—presentation time, hhmm
Data Source
National non-admitted patient emergency department care database
NMDS / DSS
Non-admitted patient emergency department care NBEDS 2018-19
Guide for use

Data source type: Administrative by-product data


Data Element / Data SetEmergency department stay—presentation date, DDMMYYYY
Data Source
National non-admitted patient emergency department care database
NMDS / DSS
Non-admitted patient emergency department care NBEDS 2018-19
Guide for use

Data source type: Administrative by-product data


Data Element / Data SetEmergency department stay—physical departure date, DDMMYYYY
Data Source
National non-admitted patient emergency department care database
NMDS / DSS
Non-admitted patient emergency department care NBEDS 2018-19
Guide for use

Data source type: Administrative by-product data


Data Element / Data SetEmergency department stay—physical departure time, hhmm
Data Source
National non-admitted patient emergency department care database
NMDS / DSS
Non-admitted patient emergency department care NBEDS 2018-19
Guide for use

Data source type: Administrative by-product data


Denominator:Help on this term

Number of emergency department presentations.

Denominator data elements:Help on this term
Data Element / Data SetEmergency department stay—presentation time, hhmm
Data Source
National non-admitted patient emergency department care database
NMDS / DSS
Non-admitted patient emergency department care NMDS 2018-19
Guide for use

Data source type: Administrative by-product data


Data Element / Data SetEmergency department stay—presentation date, DDMMYYYY
Data Source
National non-admitted patient emergency department care database
NMDS / DSS
Non-admitted patient emergency department care NMDS 2018-19
Guide for use

Data source type: Administrative by-product data


Data Element / Data SetEmergency department stay—physical departure date, DDMMYYYY
Data Source
National non-admitted patient emergency department care database
NMDS / DSS
Non-admitted patient emergency department care NMDS 2018-19
Guide for use

Data source type: Administrative by-product data


Data Element / Data SetEmergency department stay—physical departure time, hhmm
Data Source
National non-admitted patient emergency department care database
NMDS / DSS
Non-admitted patient emergency department care NMDS 2018-19
Guide for use

Data source type: Administrative by-product data


Data Element / Data SetEmergency department stay—presentation time, hhmm
Data Source
National non-admitted patient emergency department care database
NMDS / DSS
Non-admitted patient emergency department care NBEDS 2018-19
Guide for use

Data source type: Administrative by-product data


Data Element / Data SetEmergency department stay—presentation date, DDMMYYYY
Data Source
National non-admitted patient emergency department care database
NMDS / DSS
Non-admitted patient emergency department care NBEDS 2018-19
Guide for use

Data source type: Administrative by-product data


Data Element / Data SetEmergency department stay—physical departure date, DDMMYYYY
Data Source
National non-admitted patient emergency department care database
NMDS / DSS
Non-admitted patient emergency department care NBEDS 2018-19
Guide for use

Data source type: Administrative by-product data


Data Element / Data SetEmergency department stay—physical departure time, hhmm
Data Source
National non-admitted patient emergency department care database
NMDS / DSS
Non-admitted patient emergency department care NBEDS 2018-19
Guide for use

Data source type: Administrative by-product data


Disaggregation:Help on this term

2013–14, 2014–15, 2015–16, 2016–17, 2017–18, 2018–19—Nationally, by triage category.

2013–14, 2014–15, 2015–16, 2016–17, 2017–18, 2018–19—Nationally, by triage category, for:

  • patients subsequently admitted to the hospital.

Nationally, by triage category (all not reported):

  • by peer group
  • for patients not subsequently admitted to the hospital.

2013–14, 2014–15, 2015–16, 2016–17, 2017–18, 2018–19—State and territory, by triage category.

2013–14, 2014–15, 2015–16, 2016–17, 2017–18, 2018–19—State and territory, by triage category, for:

  • patients subsequently admitted to the hospital.

State and territory, by triage category (all not reported):

  • by peer group
  • for patients not subsequently admitted to the hospitals.

Local hospital network, by (all not reported):

  • triage category
  • admission status.

Hospital, by (all not reported):

  • triage category
  • admission status.

Triage categories are:

  • Triage category 1: seen within seconds, calculated as less than or equal to 2 minutes
  • Triage category 2: seen within 10 minutes
  • Triage category 3: seen within 30 minutes
  • Triage category 4: seen within 60 minutes
  • Triage category 5: seen within 120 minutes.

Disaggregation by peer group uses the peer group classification as described in the AIHW publication Australian hospital peer groups.

Some disaggregation may result in numbers too small for publication.

Disaggregation data elements:Help on this term
Data Element / Data SetEstablishment—organisation identifier (Australian), NNX[X]NNNNN
Data Source
National non-admitted patient emergency department care database
NMDS / DSS
Non-admitted patient emergency department care NMDS 2018-19
Guide for use

Data source type: Administrative by-product data
Used for disaggregation by state/territory, peer group and Local Hospital Network.


Data Element / Data SetEstablishment—organisation identifier (Australian), NNX[X]NNNNN
Data Source
National non-admitted patient emergency department care database
NMDS / DSS
Non-admitted patient emergency department care NBEDS 2018-19
Guide for use

Data source type: Administrative by-product data
Used for disaggregation by state/territory, peer group and Local Hospital Network.


Data Element / Data SetNon-admitted patient emergency department service episode—triage category, code N
Data Source
National non-admitted patient emergency department care database
NMDS / DSS
Non-admitted patient emergency department care NMDS 2018-19
Guide for use

Data source type: Administrative by-product data


Data Element / Data SetNon-admitted patient emergency department service episode—triage category, code N
Data Source
National non-admitted patient emergency department care database
NMDS / DSS
Non-admitted patient emergency department care NBEDS 2018-19
Guide for use

Data source type: Administrative by-product data


Data Element / Data SetNon-admitted patient emergency department service episode—episode end status, code N
Data Source
National non-admitted patient emergency department care database
NMDS / DSS
Non-admitted patient emergency department care NMDS 2018-19
Guide for use

Data source type: Administrative by-product data


Data Element / Data SetNon-admitted patient emergency department service episode—episode end status, code N
Data Source
National non-admitted patient emergency department care database
NMDS / DSS
Non-admitted patient emergency department care NBEDS 2018-19
Guide for use

Data source type: Administrative by-product data


Comments:Help on this term

Most recent data available for 2019 Australian Health Performance reporting: 2018–19.

Representational attributes

Representation class:Help on this termPercentage
Data type:Help on this termReal
Unit of measure:Help on this termEpisode
Format:Help on this term

N[NN][.N]

Indicator conceptual framework

Framework and dimensions:Help on this term5. Accessibility

Data source attributes

Data sources:Help on this term
Data SourceNational non-admitted patient emergency department care database
Data custodian

 Australian Institute of Health and Welfare


Accountability attributes

Reporting requirements:Help on this term

Australian Health Performance Framework

Organisation responsible for providing data:Help on this term

Australian Institute of Health and Welfare

Relational attributes

Related metadata references:Help on this term

See also Australian Health Performance Framework: PI 2.5.5–Waiting times for emergency department care: proportion seen on time, 2019 Health, Standard 09/04/2020

See also Australian Health Performance Framework: PI 2.5.6–Waiting times for emergency department care: waiting times to commencement of clinical care, 2019 Health, Standard 09/04/2020

See also Australian Health Performance Framework: PI 2.5.8–Waiting times for emergency department care: time spent in the emergency department, 2019 Health, Standard 09/04/2020

See also National Healthcare Agreement: PI 21a–Waiting times for emergency hospital care: proportion seen on time, 2020 Health, Standard 13/03/2020

See also National Healthcare Agreement: PI 21b–Waiting times for emergency hospital care: proportion of patients whose length of emergency department stay is less than or equal to four hours, 2020 Health, Standard 13/03/2020

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