The impact of implementing a pharmacy triage system on the reduction of patients’ waiting time in the fourth floor outpatient pharmacy at Hamad General Hospital, Qatar
Keywords:Waiting time, Hamad General Hospital, Qatar, Outpatient pharmacy, Triage tool
Background and Objectives: The outpatient department (OPD) pharmacy is a section of the hospital pharmacy that helps patients obtain their prescribed medications. However, on-time delivery of medications and patients’ convenient access to the pharmacy are the hallmarks of a well-designed health-care system. Therefore, the aim of this study was to develop a pharmacy triage tool to improve patient flow and reduce waiting time in the fourth-floor pharmacy at Hamad General Hospital (HGH). Methods: This prospective and observational study was conducted on 14,740 patients who attended the OPD pharmacy (HGH, Qatar) between January 15, 2022 and March 15, 2022. This prospective and observational study consisted of three periods: A root cause analysis, a pre-intervention period of 1 month (January 15, 2021–February 14, 2021) and an intervention period of 1 month (15 February–15 March). We developed a pharmacy triage tool to improve patient flow and reduce waiting time by identifying patients who need their medications to be dispensed, as well as classifying patients to get the right patient to the right place and implementing a patient flow system to improve efficiency spends in pharmacy queues. Results: The results of this study showed that the use of the triage system in the pharmacy reduced the average waiting time of patients from 50 min to 15 min. The results were statistically significant at p<0.0001. Conclusion: We concluded that applying the
pharmacy triage tool improved quality of services in health-care systems and decreased waiting time in the OPD pharmacy. The pharmacy triage tool is a new approach to enhancing the quality of healthcare and leads to an increase in the efficiency of OPD pharmacies.
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Copyright (c) 2022 Abdel-monem Badawi Yousif, Rania Obaydat, Abdel-Rahman Abbas, Adhem Rezk
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