Use of Hospital Appointment Registration Systems in China: A Survey Study

Weiping YU, Xiaowen YU, Hao HU, Guimin DUAN, Zi LIU, Yitao WANG


Background: Hospitals have expressed no knowledge of patients’ opinions regarding diversified appointment registration systems, despite efforts to develop novel appointment registration systems that assist patients and increase hospital efficiency. Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate the use of diversified appointment registration systems and explore the factors influencing patients’ registration system choices.

Methods: A survey study using a questionnaire was conducted in West China Hospital in February 2012. Outpatients were randomly selected from different hospital departments and the questionnaire was distributed and collected on-site.

Results: Data from 1,009 patients were available for analysis. Of these, 63.4% used appointment systems to register while others chose a traditional queuing method to register. 114 telephone (30.4%) and on-site (22.9%) appointments were made, whereas other systems were less used by patients. Between the non-appointment and appointment groups there were significant differences in gender, educational degree, and residence location (P < 0.05), but no significant difference in age (P > 0.05). While the clinical appointment system had the greatest number of appointment days (25.75), the bank’s self-service terminal appointment had the least number of appointment days (5.05). Leaflets sent from the hospital (50.70%) and the recommendations of friends or families (40.77%) were the two main ways of knowing about the appointment registration systems. With the exception of those who felt no need to make an appointment (30.12%), not having the capability to use the appointment systems (24.10%) and the lack of a registered health card (34.53%) were the two main reasons for not using appointment registration systems.

Conclusions: Convenience was a major motivation for patients’ use of appointment registration systems. Personal knowledge and capability were the two important factors that influenced patients’ appointment system choices. Hospitals must improve the design and promotion of appointment registration systems to better facilitate their use.

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Copyright (c) 2013 Weiping YU, Xiaowen YU, Hao HU, Guimin DUAN, Zi LIU, Yitao WANG

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Global Journal of Health Science   ISSN 1916-9736(Print)   ISSN 1916-9744(Online)


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