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Review Article

IJMDC. 2020; 4(2): 477-480

Interventions to minimize waiting times for primary care units' appointments: a review

Faisal Hammad Alatawi, Mohammed Saeed Bafail, Abdulaziz Sulaiman Alosaily, Abdulaziz Faraj Alqahtani, Omar Khalid Alsaawi, Abrar Fahad Alotaibi.


Increased waiting time, especially in an outpatient setting, is considered a significant cause for patients' dissatisfaction in most of the countries. Reducing waiting time could improve the patients' experience with healthcare services and reduce the workload over healthcare providers. This study aimed to evaluate the current literature to explore the causes of delays in primary care appointments and methods to reduce this delay to improve patients' satisfaction. A wide range of databases were searched using pre-designed keywords, to explore the reasons for the delay in primary care appointments. The next step was evaluating those articles against the eligibility criteria. The search included 26 articles, while only 5 articles were included in this review; the reports were published in 2019. Telephone arrangements and managing overbooking of patients were found to be among the most effective interventions that can shorten the time of waiting in primary care units.

Key words: Waiting time; primary care; outpatient; interventions

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