The City of Cape Town’s Health Department on Friday officially launched its new appointment system in Kraaifontein.
At most government health facilities, mense start queueing from as early as 5am, only to leave up to eight hours later, in some cases.
‘We are well aware that congested waiting areas are a source of stress not only to our patients, but also to staff,” said JP Smith, Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security, and Social Services.
“We welcome this new initiative as it will improve both patient and staff satisfaction.”
The pilot project included the design and implementation of timed appointment systems at 16 facilities.
“Patients were given both a date and a time for their appointment based on the preference of the patient, as well as appointment availability and urgency of care,” Smith explained.
“They were required only to arrive at the facility at the appointed time, and were given priority over patients without appointments or those who arrived late for their appointment.
“It is this learning from the project that is now being used to inform the appointment systems in all City Health facilities.”
The appointment system will include all non-acute services, such as maternal and child health; sexual and reproductive health; chronic health services, such as the treatment of HIV and tuberculosis; and non-communicable diseases such as hypertension and diabetes.
For acute services, patients will be prioritised based on a triage score and the time of their arrival.