Tackle patient scheduling with improved practice workflow

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Scheduling problems are a practice-wide issue, affecting every staff member. Here's how to better understand what's not working and fix it.

Most practices begin their day with the best intentions of managing their schedules. But many end up squeezing extra patients into an already busy schedule or need more time than allotted for scheduled patients. That results in bottlenecks, inefficiency, frustration, and patients kept waiting - either in the reception room or a small exam room, where time seems to move in slow motion.

Think of scheduling problems as a practice-wide issue, not one that just involves the schedulers or the providers. When the scheduling system doesn't work everyone is affected.

Resolving scheduling problems requires getting to the root cause of the problem. Sounds easy, but it's not. It takes time and dedication and typically no one in the practice has extra time. Just the same, the reality is if you don't take the time to clarify the problem, you can't find a plausible solution that will eliminate the bottlenecks, improve efficiency, and help you manage the day better.