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A symptom-scoring technique for scheduling patients in a group practice

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4 Author(s)

Specialization of physicians in recent years, coupled with the rapidly growing cost of each specialist's time, has made scheduling an increasingly important problem for group practices and other centralized cooperating groups of physicians. Inefficient or improper scheduling leads to the waste of clinic resources or increased costs to the patient. Current group practice and clinic scheduling systems are noted. A computer-processed symptom-scoring technique for selecting specialties to which a patient should be scheduled is then discussed. The symptoms are provided by the patient by means of a 200-question automated medical history questionnaire which is filled out before the patient arrives at the clinic. A print-out of symptoms reported by the patient is made available to attending physicians. In addition, points are assigned to each symptom for each specialty. Total point scores for each specialty determine which appointments are selected for the patient. The system outperforms current scheduling techniques in initial tests.

Published in:

Proceedings of the IEEE  (Volume:57 ,  Issue: 11 )

Date of Publication:

Nov. 1969

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