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    Research Letter
    Medical Education
    February 5, 2020

    Assessment of a Real-Time Locator System to Identify Physician and Nurse Work Locations

    Author Affiliations
    • 1Department of Medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, California
    • 2Biomedical Informatics Training Program, Department of Biomedical Data Science, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, California
    • 3Stanford Health Care, Stanford, California
    JAMA Netw Open. 2020;3(2):e1920352. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2019.20352

    Understanding how physicians and nurses spend their workdays is important for improving patient care and clinician training and satisfaction. Time-in-motion studies1,2 performed by human observers have demonstrated that little time is spent engaging in direct patient care vs interacting with computers in workrooms. However, studies relying on human observation are resource intensive, introduce bias, and are costly to scale. Radiofrequency identification has been increasingly used to enable real-time location systems (RTLSs) to unobtrusively map the time and locations of health care workers.3 This cross-sectional study reports the results of an RTLS-enabled study of staff time allocation on an inpatient medicine ward.