No Show Policy
On November 28, 2016, Eastern Health implements a new policy to address the number of ‘no-shows’ to its Adult Ambulatory Clinics, as well as diagnostic imaging appointments.
Approximately 1.6 million appointments are scheduled annually at Eastern Health’s adult ambulatory clinics, sometimes referred to as the outpatient specialty clinics. They include a variety of program areas, such as endoscopy, orthopedics, diabetes, and physician appointments, among others.
Statistics for 2015-2016 indicate that an average of 11 per cent of patients either did not show up for their appointments – or did not cancel with sufficient notice. This equates to 176,000 missed appointments, which have a significant impact on both the organization’s resources and its waitlists.
When a person doesn’t show at the appointed time, or doesn’t give sufficient notice, diagnostic equipment lies idle, as there is no time to offer that appointment to someone else, resulting in wasted resources of both staff and equipment. Additionally, the ‘no-show’ patient usually needs to be re-booked, which, in turn, slows down the booking/appointment process overall.
Eastern Health asks the public to partner with staff to make the appointment process more efficient and fair for all by:
A province-wide pilot project is also expected to reduce the number of ‘no shows’ to clinical appointments, a concern to the province’s four regional health authorities. An automated notification system (ANS) is being piloted in the 12 Endoscopy Services Departments throughout the regional health authorities. Eastern Health implemented ANS on November 9, 2016; as of that date, patients will be notified by phone seven days prior to an appointment, so that they may either confirm the appointment and make required preparations, or cancel the appointment, allowing other patients to be booked in unfilled appointment slots.