A Multipronged Initiative to Improve Productivity and Patient Access in a Federally Qualified Health Center Network

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Abstract

In 2012, Access Community Health Network, a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) network with 36 health centers serving the greater Chicago area, embarked on a 3-year initiative to improve patient access. “Dramatic Performance Improvement” (DPITM) included the adoption of modified open access scheduling and practice changes designed to improve capacity and the ability to balance supply and demand. This article describes DPITM implementation, strategies, and associated outcomes, including a 20% decrease in no-show rate, a 33% drop in time to the third next available appointment (TNAA), a 37% decrease in cycle time, and a 13% increase in patient satisfaction.

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