Clinical Decision Unit Manual and Protocols


Key Questions: What is detailed in the following guideline? How to facilitate optimal patient care and consistency? 

The Clinical Decision Unit strives to provide high quality patient care to those emergency department patients needing further management to determine their need for inpatient admission. Patients at Emory Healthcare are managed in the CDU based on the guidelines detailed in this manual. These guidelines are developed through research and internal consensus. Their goal is to facilitate optimal patient care and consistency. The guidelines detail what is felt to be reasonable care for most patients with the specified condition most of the time, with the understanding that appropriate exceptions may occur. Prudent judgment may allow care outside these guidelines. 




  • Contact Information
  • General Guidelines for CDU Operation
  • Guidelines for Holding Patients in the CDU 
  • Observation Unit Quality Assurance Program
  • Observation Unit Utilization Review Program
  • Guidelines for Stress Testing CDU Patients
  • CMS and ACEP Policy on Observation Services
  • CDU Statistics
  • Condition Specific Guidelines
Link to Tool: 
Contact Person/Organization: 

Emory University School of Medicine

Type of Tool:

Publication Date: 

NHS Surgical Clinical Decisions Unit