Temporary Acute Care Holding Unit opens at West Tower

December 22, 2015

122315Acutecare640To meet the growing need for pediatric inpatient acute care beds, the Acute Care Nursing Team has opened a temporary Acute Care Holding Unit (ACHU). The unit is located in the West Tower on the fourth floor (across from the NICU Sibling’s Playroom-Old NICU pod S) and can hold up to 10 non-complex, low acuity care patients.

The purpose of the ACHU is to improve patient flow through the Emergency Center (EC) by moving patients from a bed in the EC to an area where they will be cared for by an Acute Care RN. This move will free up high acuity EC beds which are currently being occupied by low acuity care patients.

“Texas Children’s has been experiencing unprecedented patient volumes,” said Monica Simmons, assistant clinical director of nursing for the ACHU. “This morning there were 25 patients holding in the Emergency Center waiting for a bed to open in the Acute Care units. This creates a backlog in the EC because the beds are occupied and new patients cannot be seen.”

By moving acute care patients to this new area, the beds in the EC will be used to see additional patients which will help reduce wait times in the EC and improve patient flow and patient satisfaction. It will also free the EC staff to care for the EC patients (which is their practice specialty) and allow acute care patients to be cared for by Acute Care staff.

The ACHU at West Tower is a temporary holding unit until the new 16-bed inpatient acute care unit opens on 5 North Abercrombie in March 2016. The unit will see primarily Pediatric Hospital Medicine patients of all ages and all diagnoses. The unit is currently under construction.

From now until March 2016, the ACHU will be open Mondays at 7 p.m. to Fridays at 7 p.m. to reflect the hospital’s highest census times.