Ambulatory emergency care guide: same day emergency care – clinical definition, patient selection and metrics

This guide offers trusts useful guidance on emergency patient flow to identify a large cohort of patients who can safely be treated on the same day, reducing admissions and improving the patient experience.

The value of ambulatory emergency care (AEC) and same day emergency care (SDEC) is streamlining clinical processes so patient care can be delivered on the same day, reducing admissions and reliance on hospital beds — to improve patient flow.

Much of the growth in admitted non-elective activity is for patients who spend 1-2 days in hospital. Whilst it is a relatively new care model the AEC/SDEC aims to minimise and remove delays in the patient pathway allowing services to offer same day care as an alternative to hospital admission for at least 12 hours per day.