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Practices can reduce patient no-shows with accurate data

Rachel Wheeler Archive
All practices deal with no-shows on a regular basis. Physicians Practice reports they may happen as often as three times per day in a facility that usually schedules 30 appointments. While some instances may be unavoidable, caused by family emergencies or other situations that demand immediate attention, a portion of these can be avoided if practices make adequate efforts to remind patients of the scheduled appointments.

Making a phone call to patients the day before to remind them of appointments can increase the chances of attendance. Physicians can also use their electronic health records systems to send out emails or text messages.

These efforts will only be effective if the information in the systems is accurate and up-to-date. The source suggests that practices ensure the systems have correct contact information for each patient, and Nurse Together recommends verifying the data quality every time a patient comes in for an appointment. This can also help when it comes to billing, since some invoices go unpaid only because the practice enters expired insurance information, sends it to old addresses, or uses the wrong name on an envelope.