Improving appointment attendance rates

When children aren’t brought to appointments services are concerned this wastes time but also puts children at risk.

The child and adolescent mental health service used audit to show that children were not brought to 13% of appointments including 47% of initial appointments.

To improve attendance a telephone reminder service was introduced.

When a repeat audit was carried out the overall “was not brought” rate had reduced to 8% including a dramatic reduction to 6% for initial appointments.

In this audit attendance was improved by reminding people. Other services have used evaluations to ask why people were not able to attend. Sometimes this information can be used to re-design clinics to make them more accessible.