Elaine Marieb College of Nursing Faculty Publication Series
Journal or Book Title
Aim: To analyze the concept of patient flow management.
Background: Patient flow has a significant impact on the provision of patient care. The term “patient flow” is widely used, but the related concept of "patient flow management" has been poorly defined. The ability to differentiate and clarify the term patient flow management has implications on strategies to improve patient flow.
Design: Rodgers evolutionary method of concept analysis.
Data Source: Literature published between 2000 and 2021 in the PubMed, CINAHL, and Business Source databases.
Review Methods: Inductive analysis of the literature was performed to identify the usage and features of the concept.
Results: Patient flow management is defined as the application of holistic perspectives, dynamic data, and complex considerations of multiple priorities to enable timely, efficient, and high‐quality patient care. Patient flow management requires the identification of a patient, care processes, a flow manager, and frontline staff. It has profound consequences on patient, staff, and hospital system outcomes.
Conclusions: Literature should more carefully delineate between “patient flow” and "patient flow management." Effective patient flow management increases the speed and quality of patient care, improves employee satisfaction, and reduces healthcare costs. Strategies to improve patient flow management should focus on understanding the role and interventions of flow management nurses.
UMass Amherst Open Access Policy
Benjamin, Ellen and Jacelon, Cynthia, "An Analysis of the Concept of Patient Flow Management" (2023). Nursing Forum. 237.