News

06.03.14

Cutting the cost of patient ‘no-shows’ a priority

In an attempt to reduce the number of missed GP and outpatient appointments, NHS England is implementing a system that ‘fits into the lives of patients’ more easily.

By rolling out a range of technological solutions to let patients check, book and cancel appointments at their own convenience and order repeat medication online, it is hoped that NHS resources can stop being wasted.

Figures provided by NHS England have suggested that more than 12 million GP appointments are missed each year in the UK, costing in excess of £162m per year. A further 6.9 million outpatient hospital appointments are missed every 12 months, costing an average of £108 per appointment in 2012/13.

Beverley Bryant, director of strategic systems and technology at NHS England, said: “It’s important that people realise that not turning up to appointments can have a big impact on the care and treatment we are able to give other patients. It wastes doctors’ and nurses’ time too, which costs taxpayers money.”

Missed appointments, known as Did Not Attends (DNAs), can cause serious delays in treatment for other patients. However, a number of clinics are starting to implement simple initiatives such as sending email and text reminders that are starting to have a positive impact: outpatient DNAs have fallen to 9.1% from 10.5% in 2008/9.

In some cases, doctors are also making the most of the rise of smartphones and tablets to connect with patients. For example, outpatient consultations via Skype are becoming increasingly common for patients who don’t need a physical examination.

Bryant added: “Patient care is always at the top of our agenda. That’s why we are doing everything we can to make our service match with people’s lifestyles and the technology they use, to give more people easy access to the services they need. We hope the public will do their bit too by making sure they attend or cancel appointments in good time. That way, everybody benefits.”

Tell us what you think – have your say below or email opinion@nationalhealthexecutive.com

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

national health executive tv

more videos >

latest news

View all News

comment

NHS England dementia director prescribes rugby for mental health and dementia patients

23/09/2019NHS England dementia director prescribes rugby for mental health and dementia patients

Reason to celebrate as NHS says watching rugby can be good for your mental ... more >
Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

21/06/2019Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

Taking time to say thank you is one of the hidden pillars of a society. Bei... more >

editor's comment

26/06/2020Adapting and Innovating

Matt Roberts, National Health Executive Editorial Lead. NHE May/June 2020 Edition We’ve been through so much as a health sector and a society in recent months with coronavirus and nothing can take away from the loss and difficulties that we’ve faced but it vital we also don’t disregard the amazing efforts we’ve witnessed. Staff have gone above and beyond, whole hospitals and trusts have flexed virtually at will to meet demand and pressures and we’ve... read more >

last word

Haseeb Ahmad: ‘We all have a role to play in getting innovations quicker’

Haseeb Ahmad: ‘We all have a role to play in getting innovations quicker’

Haseeb Ahmad, president of the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI), sits down with National Health Executive as part of our Last Word Q&A series. Would you talk us throu more > more last word articles >

interviews

Matt Hancock says GP recruitment is on the rise to support ‘bedrock of the NHS’

24/10/2019Matt Hancock says GP recruitment is on the rise to support ‘bedrock of the NHS’

Today, speaking at the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) annual... more >

the scalpel's daily blog

NHS at 72: Managing mental health services going forward

03/07/2020NHS at 72: Managing mental health services going forward

Sean Duggan, Chief Executive of the Mental Health Network Let’s take this opportunity to reflect on the amazing achievements of our health system over the past few ... more >
read more blog posts from 'the scalpel' >

healthcare events

events calendar

back

July 2020

forward
mon tue wed thu fri sat sun
29 30 1 2 3 4 5
6 7 8 9 10 11 12
13 14 15 16 17 18 19
20 21 22 23 24 25 26
27 28 29 30 31 1 2
3 4 5 6 7 8 9

featured articles

View all News