Document Type : Original Article(s)


1 Associated Professor, Health Information Management, Isfahan university of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran

2 Associated Professor, Operation Research, Isfahan university, Isfahan, Iran


Abstract Introduction: The hospital discharge process is a basic bottleneck in hospital management. Improved discharge process is the main strategy that covers many hospital activities. Discharge process is the last patient's contact with hospital system. Therefore, it is the most important stage affecting patient's satisfaction. If this process takes long, not only it makes patients dissatisfied but it also will not be beneficial for the hospital. The main objective was determining average waiting time of patient discharge process at Beheshti Hospital in Esfahan, Iran in the spring of 2006. Methods: This study was case study in which data were collected by questionnaires, observation and forms. The statistical population was all personnel involved in discharge process and patients discharged throughout the spring of 2006. To analyze data SPSS and Win QSB (Windows Quantative Systems for Business) were used. Results: According to the personnel's views, the main factors affecting average waiting time were patients' financial problems and un-accessibility of interns to complete the summery sheets. The longest patient's waiting time for discharge was 345 minutes and the least was 35 minutes. Average time for patients in discharge process was 197 (±65) minutes. Conclusion: Discharge planning is a routine feature of health systems in many countries. Hospital information system should be implemented at least between wards, Para-clinics stations, accounting and cashier station. It causes many stages in manual patients' discharge process will be omitted. Keywords: Hospitals; Patient Discharge; Time