In a recent New York Times article, Dr. Barron Lerner, M.D, stated, “when I schedule tests and follow-up visits, I expect that they will occur. As such, one might assume that there are foolproof systems in place to ensure follow-up. Yet this is far from the case.” He goes on to say, “from a legal perspective, rescheduling needs to occur”.
Patients are missing appointments, and then they are taking legal action against their doctor when bad things happen. Clearly, reducing no-shows, especially for referral appointments, is vital to delivering quality health care. Moreover, failing to do so not only creates gaps in care, but also creates a dangerous legal gray area that it’s best to avoid.