The struggle of long waiting times is a prevailing problem for most medical practices. This trend has gone far too long and has caused public distrust in the integrity of the medical industry.
To address this problem, the Institute for Healthcare Improvement or IHI has conducted research to understand the correlation of supply and demand in the medical practice. The demand for medical help is at a constant rate of increasing growth. Meanwhile, the supply has remained low because of the limited medical clinics. Because of that, the IHI suggests looking closely at the internal flow of the tasks within the medical offices.
If you’re looking for a solution for your clinic’s waiting time issues, we listed below some helpful tips:
1. Make a Chart of All the Relevant Data
Before you can make changes in your medical practice, you first need to gather as much data as you can to know where to base your management decisions. To gather data, you must record all incoming and outgoing patient times for a few short weeks. With enough relevant data, you can chart your future staffing schedules more accurately.
Try to take note of all the peak hours of the day or busiest days of the week. With this knowledge, you will know when to add more staff to accommodate the long lines waiting for their turn. You can schedule the appointments that are expected to take longer during the least busy days.
2. Reduce the Bottleneck of Administrative Processes
Long patient waiting times may also be due to the number of administrative tasks that need to be done. Your administrative staff may be having problems coping with all the work. This will result in disrupting the flow of patients.
To address this problem, you need to implement some best practices for your administrative staff. One of the best ways to do this is to set up an online appointment schedule and an online check-in. This will significantly decrease the time required in communicating with the patients.
3. Reduce the Time for Confirming with Patients
A typical situation that occurs is that after a patient is called for their turn, the patient has not yet filled out their patient information sheet completely. This will result in waiting longer on the part of the other patients. You need to hasten the process of data collection by guiding the patient in filling out the patient information sheet. This may seem like a simple process, but it will have a big impact in the long run. Additionally, your office should prioritize the confirmation of appointments. If you secure all confirmation ahead of time, it will lessen the wasted time waiting for the unconfirmed patients to come in.
Trying to keep up with patient demands is a constant struggle for medical offices. This means that there must be proper implementation of new practices to manage the overall workflow of a clinic. This will result in providing more care for patients, as well as speeding up the process of addressing the problems. To help you with your administrative tasks, consider a medical co-working space for your medical practice. With a more efficient workflow, you can reduce your patient waiting time and increase their satisfaction as well.
If you’re looking for a medical co-working space in NYC, get in touch with us today to see how we can help.