Observation In The Waiting Room

813 Words4 Pages
Recently, time was spent observing and waiting at a doctor’s office. The practice is a small, one doctor general practice. Sign-ins are done on individual slips of paper, and left on the counter, then patients sit and wait until called. In the waiting room, the doctor tried to mitigate aggravation for those waiting by providing a television, a variety of recent magazines, and various medical brochures. The office was quite busy due to the ongoing flu epidemic. Upon arrival, there was one person in the waiting room, five that arrived later, and at least 5 in the exam rooms. Being a doctor’s office, they utilize a combination of prioritization based on the level of illness or injury followed by appointments, then walk-ins. The waiting time to get into a room was 38 minutes or 33 minutes past the appointment time, and several patients that arrived later had already been taken back. Once in the exam room, there was nothing to occupy your time except a few medical posters on the wall, and the staff was not seen or heard from. By the time the doctor arrived in the room, the waiting period had grown to 68 minutes or 63 minutes past the scheduled appointment time. The doctor was in the office for two minutes before being called to take a phone call. When he came back, the appointment lasted seven minutes. Overall, a simple follow up appointment cost an hour and twenty-five minutes of the patient’s time, and this did not include a trip to the pharmacy to fill
Open Document