Evaluation of Clinical No-Show Rates in the Setting of an Outpatient Internal Medicine Residency Clinic
A no-show appointment is clinically defined as a scheduled appointment in which a patient fails to attend without prior notification to the provider or staff. In primary care clinics, no-show rates have been shown to range from 15% to 30%. Smaller studies have shown that interventions including phone calls, emails or text message reminders can reduce no-show rates.1–9 Our retrospective review sought to evaluate a similar intervention performed at the Multispecialty Residency Clinic (MSC). A test of two proportions was performed to evaluate the effect of a 24-hour reminder phone call. The no-show rate before initiating a 24-hour phone call was 17.8%, and following the intervention this rate improved to 16%, an observed reduction of 1.9% with a 95% confidence interval (CI) from 0.1% to 3%, p = 0.003. New patient encounters, established patient visits and cancellations were analyzed as secondary endpoints to further evaluate the effects of a reminder phone call. Our retrospective analysis is the largest to date regarding the effectiveness of utilizing phone call reminders to reduce no-show rates in the setting of a residency clinic and has confirmed a significant 2% reduction in no-show appointments.