Mobile web site and downloadable apps to quickly follow
Just 18 months after launching online wait times for its emergency room,
Atlantic General Hospital is introducing real-time waits for two other
services: x-rays and outpatient lab work.
The mechanism used to track and post the wait times for the emergency room
translated very well to these other walk-in outpatient services because
patients are in an even better position to time their visits.
“When a physician orders x-rays or blood work, a patient can come
in any time during service hours Monday through Saturday. But, there do
tend to be patterns of peak visit times when the wait is longer,”
said Paige Warrington, outpatient services coordinator at Atlantic General
Hospital. “Now patients can better time their visits to get in and
out quickly and on with the rest of their day.”
In a few short weeks, the online wait times will be even more accessible
to the public when Atlantic General becomes the first hospital in Maryland
to offer yet another convenience: a mobile-friendly web site and downloadable
apps for the iPhone, Android and Blackberry mobile devices.
When someone with a mobile device downloads the app, he or she can access
the current wait times for all three services – ER, x-ray and outpatient
lab – with the tap of a finger.
“We’re excited to be able to offer this to the community,”
said Toni Keiser, vice president of public relations at Atlantic General
Hospital. “Two major goals in healthcare today are to become more
accessible and more transparent to our patient populations. This innovative
healthcare communications project helps accomplish both.”
The undertaking involved a collaboration of the hospital’s outpatient
services department, IT services and their web developer to create a dynamic
web display that presents accurate figures – really an average wait
time value – every five minutes.
”Healthcare is a part of everyone’s life. It is our responsibility
as a provider of these services to develop ways to better integrate compliance
with healthcare prescribed by an individual’s physician and that
person’s other daily activities,” states Michael Franklin,
President and CEO of Atlantic General Hospital. “Awareness of services
and convenience are keys to compliance.”
About Outpatient Services
The Outpatient Services Department at Atlantic General Hospital is open
six days a week for x-rays, blood work and other imaging and specimen
collection and diagnostics. Hours of operation are 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. until 12 p.m. on Saturday. For more information,