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Crowded Doctor's Office? New Study Suggests 'Go With the Flow'

physiciantypicalday720.pngWe've all faced long lines: at the bank, holiday shopping, grocery stores (especially when someone with 20 items jumps in the 15 or fewer line). Cashiers instinctively rush through the line to accomplish their goal: no line. But does this "backlog" phenomenon of rushing to the "finish line" translate to the clinic or doctor's office?

A group of researchers out of Johns Hopkins believe so, according to a study published in BMJ Open. They looked at 3 JH locations and collected data on appointment times, patient punctuality, and physician-patient interaction. Read more about the study from Futurity.

Their findings: Doctors believe all patients should get equal time. But when it comes down to it, the average time doctors see patients changes based on how punctual the patient was (the early or on-time patients received more time than those who were late) and how crowded the waiting room was (the more crowded the waiting room, the more doctors were compelled to spend less time with each patient to make sure each patient was seen).

How do the researchers suggest to fix this issue? Keep patient face-to-face time consistent, no matter how crowded the doctor's office or how late the patients are.

Patient time is the most important time for doctors to delve into complaints, arrive at an accurate diagnosis and explain treatment options. Having a clinical diagnostic decision support tool at your fingertips is key in making quality face-to-face time with patients efficient. Learn more about how VisualDx accomplishes those goals. 

About VisualDx

VisualDx is an award-winning diagnostic clinical decision support system that has become the standard electronic resource at more than half of U.S. medical schools and more than 1,500 hospitals and institutions nationwide.  VisualDx combines clinical search with the world's best medical image library, plus medical knowledge from experts to help with diagnosis, treatment, self-education, and patient communication. Expanding to provide diagnostic decision support across General Medicine, the new VisualDx brings increased speed and accuracy to the art of diagnosis. Learn more at