A patient in a bed on wheels being whisked into a hospital emergency department.

PAPT vastly improves prediction of patient presentations and admissions.

Reducing bottlenecks in hospitals

CSIRO software predicts how many patients will arrive at emergency, their medical needs and how many will be admitted or discharged.

  • 4 August 2011 | Updated 30 May 2012

Accurate forecasting of the demand on a hospital's resources is possible and, when implemented, can help ensure access to emergency care and a hospital bed.

Our solution

Staff at the Australian e-Health Research Centre (a joint venture between CSIRO and the Queensland government) have developed a software package to help hospital staff predict demand on their services.

The Patient Admission Prediction Tool (PAPT) allows on-the-ground staff to see what their patient load will be like in the next hour, the rest of the day, into next week, or even on holidays with varying dates, such as Easter.

During testing, PAPT showed vastly improved prediction of patient presentation and admission in two hospitals with very different populations.

PAPT is currently in use in Queensland.

Current activities

CSIRO software is helping hospital staff predict demand on their services.

We are investigating how PAPT can be used to help an entire hospital run more smoothly and efficiently, from reducing 'bed block' in emergency departments to minimising waiting time for elective surgery.

We are working with clinicians to build in so-called process information and establish trigger points, so staff know what to do in a given situation.

We are also extending PAPT to predict diseases such as influenza and the hospital admissions of patients with chronic diseases.


Accurate forecasting of patient load will assist with:

  • bed management
  • staff resourcing
  • scheduling of elective surgery.

It should also reduce stress for staff.

For patients it should mean improved outcomes such as:

  • timely delivery of emergency care
  • improved quality of care
  • less time spent in hospital.


PAPT was developed in close collaboration with:

  • Queensland Health 
  • Griffith University
  • Queensland University of Technology.

Find out how CSIRO is Making electronic health records more accessible.

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