Problem:

In healthcare, wait times are a complex issue that has negative impacts on both clients and staff. The Bridging Clinic at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) utilizes a first-come, first-serve drop-in model to provide clients with low barrier access to mental health services. One consequence of this type of service delivery model is prolonged wait times. Data from the Bridging Clinic monthly service report (October 2020 to March 2021) indicates that, on average, 47% of clients wait longer than one hour from the time of registration to the initial clinician assessment.

Background:

The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) Bridging Clinic provides essential mental health services to patients newly discharged from the CAMH ED or in-patient units (Building a Bridge to Emergency Care, n.d.). To provide low barrier access to these services, the clinic offers drop-in appointments to patients on a first-come, first-serve basis (The CAMH Bridging Service, 2019). Due to the nature of this model, the amount of time a patient spends waiting to see a clinician can vary greatly. A current state analysis conducted by our team revealed that patients can wait from as little as five minutes up to eight hours. Inefficiencies related to wait times can negatively impact clinicians' satisfaction with the care they provide and is reported to be an issue by both Bridging Clinic patients and staff. Our project aims to reduce the number of inefficiencies clinicians experience related to wait times to improve their satisfaction with the care they provide. Utilizing the principles of Quality Improvement (QI), we will identify, implement, and evaluate specific change ideas or interventions, that address the root causes of inefficiencies related to wait times.

Capstone Team:

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Project Advisory Committee:

Supervisor