The issue of Did Not Attends (DNAs) is a huge problem in the NHS and is a frustration for both patients waiting to get an appointment and for those working in the Practice.
On average the Practice has 3% DNA rate for GP appointments and a 29% DNA rate for the Practice Nurse every month, i.e. the patient does not show up for the appointment and does not contact the surgery in advance to cancel or change the appointment.
For this reason we have had to implement a policy:-
Patients should notify the Surgery if they can not attend an appointment giving as much notice as possible. The receptionist will then cancel this appointment and it can be offered to another patient.
(2) Failing to attend without prior notification
A DNA occurs when an appointment is not attended and the patient has not notified the surgery in advance to cancel or where the cancellation is so late that it is not possible to offer to another patient.
Where a patient has 2 DNA’s, i.e. fails to attend the surgery on 2 occasions for any appointment including Nurse or GP a first letter will be sent to the patient. The letter will give the various ways that the Surgery can be contacted to cancel an appointment and the patient will be asked to complete the ‘failure to attend’ questionnaire and will be asked to inform the Practice in the future if they can not attend.
If the patient fails to attend a further appointment following receipt of the first letter, a further letter will be sent to the patient advising them of the missed appointment and that they may be removed from the Practice list should they fail to attend any further appointments in the next 12 months without cancelling first.
If following a second letter, the patient fails to attend an appointment again, the patient shall be removed form the Practice list.