Hamad General Hospital (HGH) has completed introducing its fixed time appointment system at the Out Patient Department and it will be put into practice at all clinics by end of May, officials said.
“The Hospital has completed the roll out of the new fixed time appointment systems at all clinics on the 2nd floor of the Outpatient Department. This includes General Medicine clinics, Diabetes and Endocrinology clinics and Chest Medicine clinics,” Dr Yousuf al Maslamani, Chief of Medical Staff Hamad General Hospital said yesterday at a press conference held at the Hamad Medical city.
“The role out is going well and by end of May all clinics in Hamad General Hospital Outpatient Department will have been moved to the new system,” he said.
As per the new system, patients from the Primary Health care Centres and the private clinics and hospitals can consult a specialist at the Outpatients Department at Hamad General Hospital only with a referral from their doctor. Following a clinical assessment of the referral, Patient Contact Centre will call the patient to arrange a suitable appointment.
“Earlier this month we launched the new system with a timetable showing how the new system has been introduced in various OPD clinics of Hamad General Hospital. We have successfully introduced the new fixed appointment system in 60 percent of Out Patient Department clinics,” said Dr Nasser Al Naimi, Executive Director of the Centre of Health care Improvement, Hamad Medical Cooperation.
The Patient Contact Centre has contacted about 32,000 patients and received more than 5,700 calls form patients during the period between January and March.
More than 14,000 SMS messages have been sent to registered patients in order to update their information, where 24 percent of them were found with incorrect information. Also, around 19,442 referrals have been received from Primary Health care Centres and private clinics and hospitals during the same period.
Patients obtaining a referral from a Primary Health care Centre do not need to visit the Out Patient Department to book their appointment. Hamad Medical Corporation has made arrangements with the Primary Health care Centres to collect the referrals. However, patients obtaining a referral from a private clinic or hospital should still visit the Out Patients Department to hand in their referral letter.
“We have not yet introduced a mechanism to collect these referrals. Once the referrals are received at the Outpatients Department this will be processed in the same way and following the clinical assessment of the referral our Referral Management Office will call the patients to arrange a suitable appointment,” said Dr Al Naimi.
All patients will receive a reminder phone call three days before their appointment and an SMS on the day before their appointment. Further, walk in patients strictly will not be referred to clinics at the Out Patients Department.
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