10/21/2019 | News release | Distributed by Public on 10/21/2019 18:32
Missed appointments increase costs and delays for the Alaska Tribal Health System. We all make our medical appointments for health care with the best intentions to be there on time. But sometimes things come up, and we skip our appointment or show up late. No harm done, right?
Unfortunately, missed appointments or late arrivals have a broader reach than just one appointment and your own health care needs. Missed and late appointments also harm our health system, fellow community members and increase the cost of health care for the Alaska Native community.
Each year, staff working at Alaska Native Medical Center, schedule more than 400,000 appointments for Alaska Native and American Indian people. As the need for health care services continues to increase without matching increases in funding, it becomes more important for each person to keep his or her appointments.
Why? Because each time someone misses an appointment, it takes the opportunity away from another member of the Native community to obtain health care services. A missed appointment also harms your health care system by taking valuable staff time and hospital space for people who do not show up while others are waiting.
For some specialty clinics, as many as one in five appointments have late arrivals or are missed altogether. As a result, the Alaska Native community loses more than $4 million in wasted health care staff time and facilities at ANMC alone.
With your help, we can achieve our vision that Alaska Native people are the healthiest people in the world.
How can you help?
1) Be sure your provider or clinic staff writes down your follow-up appointment times for you before you leave.
2) Help your family members or friends get to their appointments on time.
3) If an emergency does arise that keeps you, your friend or family member from making an appointment on time, please call as soon as possible to reschedule. Often, we can reassign that time to someone else.
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