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Details

Team Members:
Rishi Khullar
Eugene Yakubovich
Dave Turner

Website:
health.waitbot.com

Platform:
Web Application

Location:
State of Illinois

Category:
Health

Data Sets:

 






Waitbot is a fully responsive web app showing wait times for ER facilities in IL. We wrote an algorithm of time-decayed weighted averages for user-submitted wait times. Using the Twilio API, patients can receive text updates on wait time changes.

waitbot

How did you us the data set(s) in your Submission?

We’re using the free standing emergency center data set to populate our MySQL database of places that users can compare wait times for.

What problem/challenge is your Submission helping to solve, and how?

ER wait times are a massive problem. In 2009, Illinois ranked 25th in average number of minutes waited in ERs at 241 minutes! In a 2010 survey of 1,602,975 patients across 1,908 hospitals nationwide, how well patients were informed about delays was the most important factor with respect to whether those patients would recommend the hospital. By making wait time data open, transparent and accessible from any device, we help IL patients save time and frustration while improving ER efficiency.

What community members will your Submission help serve, and how will they be impacted?

If you’re in need of emergency care and you wanted to know all the ER wait times in IL, you have absolutely no way of knowing unless you Google all of the hospitals and click through their often poorly designed websites to find wait times. If you’re on mobile, you’re really in trouble as most hospital websites are not responsive. More importantly, many hospitals don’t even report wait times on their websites. Presumably, if you’re in need of medical care urgently, you’d like to know how to receive this care in the quickest way possible. The existing solutions to this problem are simply not useful. 

Our submission will help Illinois residents make more informed decisions about when and where to seek emergency medical care. If there’s a 4 hour wait time at the ER nearest to you, maybe it makes sense to drive an hour away to the ER with a 30 minute wait time. Alternatively, maybe it makes sense to receive a text update when this 4 hour wait time drops to 1 hour so you can go then. Both use cases translate to less time wasted in waiting rooms for hours while suffering in pain. This would also drastically improve Illinois’ national ranking for average number of minutes waited in ERs. 

Our submission also helps hospitals improve the quality of care they provide and the overall patient experience. We help hospitals deliver on what a patient cares about most when recommending ERs to friends and family — how well the ER informed her of wait times.

We are bringing a completely new innovation to healthcare and blazing a trail of data transparency. We’re excited to not only be using a government data set, but also to lend a hand in creating a new data set that the government and residents of Illinois can use freely. We have every intention of making ER wait time data fully open.

How do you envision city and/or state government utilizing your Submission to make a positive impact on the Pilot Community of State of Illinois?

We envision city and state government helping us with distribution and getting this web app on every desktop/tablet in every ER in Illinois. We don’t see any reason why Illinois can’t be the top-ranked in the nation, or even the world, with respect to ER patient satisfaction. With our government’s help in distributing this labor of love and innovation, Illinois can create a new model for excellence in how the world should approach solving this massive, ubiquitous problem of ER wait times.

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