Do medical outpatients want 'out of hours' clinics?

Claire L. Feeney, Nicola J. Roberts, Martyn R. Partridge

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    Abstract

    Background: Patient choice is a major theme in current healthcare delivery. Little is known about patients' wishes regarding the timing of medical outpatient clinics.
    Methods: A questionnaire survey of 300 sequential patients attending cardiac and respiratory clinics to determine patients preferences for out of hours and weekend outpatient clinics. (Out of hours defined as a clinic after 5 pm on Mon – Fri)
    Results: Two hundred and 64 patients completed the survey of which 165 (62.5%) wanted either an out of hours clinics or a weekend clinic. Sixty four (38.8%) specifically stated that this was because of work commitments but for many others, the reasons given were easy to justify.
    Conclusion: Current provision for outpatient consultation may not be convenient for many patients with heart and lung disease. A fuller evaluation of the cost and benefits of more flexible clinic hours is now needed.
    Original languageEnglish
    Number of pages4
    JournalBMC Health Services Research
    Volume5
    Issue number47
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 24 Jun 2005

    Keywords

    • outpatient service
    • medical appointments
    • health policy
    • patient surveys

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