Missed appointments at Milton Keynes Hospital costing £1.4million

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Patients missing appointments at Milton Keynes Hospital are costing taxpayers £1.4million a year.

The hospital is urging people to cancel hospital appointments if they are not able to attend, so the time can be allocated to another patient as it revealed 12,000 people failed to do so last year at an average cost of £117 for each appointment.

Fortunately these missed appointments, known as Did Not Attends (DNAs), are below the national average and the number of DNAs has fallen steadily over the last few years.

Trudi Mynard, head of patient services, said: “We need patients to attend their appointment, or get in touch with us in advance to cancel. We would like to thank the majority of our patients - more than 95 per cent – who do this.

“If you really can’t attend a certain time or day, just give us a call or send us an email, and we can make sure that someone else has the opportunity to use the appointment instead.”

If you no longer need an appointment, or if the date is not suitable, the appropriate contact details will be on your appointment letter. Alternatively you can find the details at www.mkhospital.nhs.uk/change-an-appointment

In Milton Keynes, a significant factor in the reduction of missed appointments was the introduction of a call reminder service. The hospital started a trial of the service in 2009, and expanded it to cover almost all appointments in 2011.

DNA rates by financial year:

2009/10 – 9.65%

2010/11 – 9.14%

2011/12 – 6.36%

2012/13 – 5.15%

2013/14 – 4.91%