Impact of Telephone Reminders on Attendance Rate at Paediatric Clinics
Background: Non-attendance in clinics has major economic impact in the national health service. Literature review indicates that main reason for non-attendance is forgetfulness and reminders reduce the non-attendance rate (NAR). Objectives: We aimed to evaluate the NAR at the paediatric outpatient clinics after implementation of telephone reminders. Patients and Methods: NAR was reviewed for 6 months (February-July 2013) and compared with the NAR for similar duration in 2014 (before and after implementation of telephone reminders). Within 2014 data, comparison was also made for patients who confirmed attendance during telephone reminders versus those left a voice message and patients who were not contactable. Results: Total number of patients in 6 months were 4156 [2674 follow-up (F/U), 1482 New] in 2013 and 4732 [3100 F/U, 1632 New] in 2014. Overall NAR in 2014 was significantly lower (5.1%) than in 2013 (P = < 0.001)). The difference for follow up appointments was 6.9% (P = < 0.001), and 1.75% for new appointments (P = 0.147). Patients who confirmed attendance were more likely to attend their appointment (97.9%) compared with those left a voice message (91.4%) and those that were not contactable (82.1%). Conclusions: Our results validate that telephonic confirmation of clinic appointment plays a significant role in reducing the NAR in paediatric out-patient clinic setting.
- Paediatrics