Appointments – Did Not Attend
‘Did Not Attend’ (DNA) is when the patient does not turn up for a pre-booked GP appointment and does not contact the practice in advance to cancel/change appointment. Many valuable appointment slots are missed every month i.e. the patient does not turn up for the appointment and does not contact the practice in advance to cancel/change the appointment. The affect of these are:
- An increase in the waiting time for appointments
- Frustration for both staff and patients
- A waste of resources
- A potential risk to the health of the patient
Our Aim is
- To free up appointments for those who genuinely need them
- To reduce the waste of clinical time
- To reduce the pressure on all staff in being able to offer prompt appointments
Whitchurch Medical Centre is committed to ensuring that the best possible service is provided to all patients registered with the practice.
A consistent approach to dealing with DNAs, plays an important role in encouraging patients to assist in ensuing that clinics are managed efficiently.
This policy relates to the handling of DNA’s and outlines the expectations of patients and staff in the management of these instances.
A weekly search will be performed by the Data Administrator to identify patients who have not turned up for GP appointments that week. This report will be reviewed by the GPs to identify patient’s who should be excluded from the general policy for clinical reasons e.g., memory loss. Once reviewed the list will be given to the Data Administrator to action, the following process will then be followed:
- When a patient DNAs an appointment this will be noted in the medical record and a text will be sent to the patient advising that this action has been taken.
- If a patient DNAs a second time within 6 months, this will be once again recorded in the patient’s record and another text sent.
- Where a third DNA has occurred, the practice will review the individual case and a decision will be taken with regard to addressing the patient’s future ability to pre-book appointments. The practice will consider whether consistent failure to adhere to our practice policy constitutes a breakdown between patient and the GP.
How to avoid becoming a DNA
If you cannot attend or no longer need an appointment, please ring the practice in advance to cancel.
Mistakes do happen and the practice understands that appointments can be forgotten about or overlooked. In such cases, the practice will take into account the reason given by the patient.
Preference, of course, is for the practice to know in advance so we can offer the appointment(s) to other patients in need.