Failure to keep appointments at a community health centre: Analysis of causes

Doron Hermoni, David Mankuta, Shmuel Reis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


The scheduled appointment system in primary care clinics became popular recently in Israel. Failed appointments created a problem for the doctors, patients and the clinic in Netivot. During 11 months, 2,317 appointments were surveyed. The survey showed 36% of failed appointments, with a decrease to 28% one year later. Rates of failed appointments were 38% for the paediatric population, 35% for adults, and 34% for pensioners. Market days and holidays predisposed to more failed appointments, representing community customs. The presence of a chronic disease that needed follow-up ensured a higher rate of attendance (76% especially among the paediatric population (92% attendance rate). By contrast, a geriatric patient with an acute disease had difficulty attending the clinic (only 16% attending). 512 people (35% of the population) were responsible for the 827 failed appointments, and among them only 12% of the population accounted for 59% of the failed appointments. These findings have important implications in the planning of an appointment system in an urban health centre, and they strengthen the assumption that a small number of patients cause a large number of failed appointments.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)151-155
Number of pages5
JournalScandinavian Journal of Primary Health Care
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1990
Externally publishedYes


  • Failed appointments
  • Primary care
  • Scheduled appointment system


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