Assessment of out-patients’ perception on timing hospital appointment to reduce waiting time at primary health care centre Abakaliki, South East Nigeria: A cross-sectional study

Eze NC and Uneke CJ

International Research Journal of Medicine and Medical Sciences
Published: May 16 2017
Volume 5, Issue 2
Pages 19-24


As an important factor of patient’s satisfaction, waiting time, has gained increasing attention in the field of health care services. This study aimed to assess treated patients’ perception on scheduling hospital appointment to reduce waiting time. A cross-sectional study using a convenience sampling method was conducted in a primary health centre in Abakaliki. A self-administered questionnaire was used for data collection and 5 point likert scale was used for analysis. Data were collected from 305 treated patients. Thirty six percent (36%) of the respondents agreed that they spend much time waiting for doctors or nurses when seeking health services in the facility. Thirty six percent (36%) of the respondents said that hospital appointment timing is very necessary, 34% of the respondents agreed very much that timing hospital appointment will make them not to stay too long in the hospital. Two-third of the respondents [64%] described hospital appointment timing as really relevant. Different features of the perceptions indicated the mean ratings (MNRs) and mostly ranged from 2.94 to 4.02 on a 5 point scale. The overall assessment of the perception had MNR at 3.76. In conclusion, adoption of an appointment system and flexible management of doctor scheduling may be an effective way to achieve reduced waiting time. It is recommended that policy back up for timing hospital appointments to improve service delivery and clients’ satisfaction in our health system. More studies should look into patients’ attitude towards long waiting time.

Keywords: Out-patient’s perception, timing appointment, waiting time.

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