Capacity and Capability

This page will support teams in assessing their capacity and capability and evaluating their program's readiness to expand into the emergency department (ED) setting.


Capacity  is a measure of the amount of work an organization can do. It's based on its current infrastructure. It's measured in terms of the number of resources or staff members that are available to address the need (e.g., is your team currently at its capacity or could it take on more work?).

Capability  is your organization's ability to achieve specific outcomes or objectives. An organization needs a combination of people, processes, and technology to perform a task or function. It measures the level of ability (e.g., skills, knowledge, resources) your team has to meet the need.

Building Your Team’s Capacity and Capability for ED Expansion Work

As you look at your team’s ability to expand into the ED, understanding the expertise you have and the services you offer, or what you are capable of offering, will largely dictate the work path you choose. Setting yourself up for success means being realistic about your team’s ability to work with ED providers. You should establish those expectations early on.

Establishing Your Key Team Members

As you assess your team, we found that the below were essential members of ED expansion work:

  • Clinical Lead/Medical Director
  • Program Manager/Administration
  • Project Manager or Coordinator
  • Social Worker/Licensed Mental Health Worker
  • Child Psychiatrist
  • Data Manager
  • Community Resource Coordinator (e.g., community health worker)
  • Legal Counsel
  • IT Support

Internal Assessment for Teams

To effectively prepare your team for ED work, you need to answer several important questions. These questions will determine your team's ability to meet the needs of the EDs you plan to work with. This will help set realistic expectations for your team's ED expansion work.

Here are some important questions to consider to determine your team's capacity and capability: