Sample Case Study On 6a. Office Setting Configuration

Type of paper: Case Study

Topic: Medicine, Nursing, Clinic, Workplace, Patient, Office, Doctor, Appointment

Pages: 3

Words: 825

Published: 2020/10/30


Market Research: Promotion of Customer Loyalty

Besides location of a medical practice there are several other factors that determine the configuration of a medical office. Unlike a business office, a medical clinic is more complex because of the need for examination rooms, medical equipment, storage space, doctor’s offices, rest room, dining room, waiting room and so on. The opening of a new medical clinic for the above clientele must also take into account traffic issues and its visibility. Also of consideration is the commute time for workers to get to the clinic. Some of the workers may want to be seen by the doctor early and return back to work, so commuting time is essential.
Before one even considers the internal configuration of a medical clinic, it is important to ensure that the external features are respectable. The medical clinic needs adequate signs to reveal the office name, hours and specialties offered. The sign has to be in a place where it can be visible to the public. The patient clientele mentioned above is most likely employed and middle class. Thus, it is likely that these patients are insured; hence, the medical clinic must make every effort to satisfy this patient clientele. First the building should be big enough, the location should be well lit, and have adequate parking. The image of the clinic should be immaculate. It is also important to have the building constructed so that the clinic facilities are on the ground floor as this allows for more traffic. Patients hate to climb stairs or go to multiple floors. Building multilevel clinics also increases costs. Configuration of a medical office does require the expertise of an architect and a designer. Before erecting any building, the office layout must be drafted. The type of medical equipment needed must be determined before the building is erected. Just because this patient population is working does not mean that less medical equipment is required. People do grow old, they may have families and children and this has also to be taken into consideration (Newbell, 2004).
Medical clinics are quite sophisticated and each specialty serves a specific purpose and service. Thus, one has to follow particular state building codes, state health codes, and AIA Guidelines. The two systems that all medical practices should have include a patient flow system and a communication system. The facility should be set such that patients can oriented themselves without a nurse or a doctor showing them the enter or exit signs. The entrance and waiting rooms should be decorated and memorable. The amount of spatial space can only be determined by patient traffic. It also depends on the physician style and type of practice. For physicians who perform minor procedures, a large examination room is usually required (Murphy, 2005). If the clinic has an orthopedic physician, the size may also vary because there will be a need to obtain x-rays. Some practices require additional equipment, like onsite laboratory facilities, pulmonary function tests, or a cardiology suite where stress tests, ECG and echo can be performed. Since it is likely that most of these workers have insurance and with the Affordable Care Act in place, the office must have in place an electronic medical record system. The need for information technology and it installation must be considered as this is now part of Affordable Care Act (Smith, 2003).
Not only does one have to worry about the number of patients who may visit the clinic, but the number of employee who may work in the clinic. There must be enough space for the clinic workers and a place for them to rest, change and eat. The waiting room should be warm, have appropriate color, reading material and lightening. It should be large and comforting. The medical clinic must have accessible paths for both ambulatory and non-ambulatory patients. A ramp for a wheelchair must be installed. Even before the clinic is official opened, a dry run must be carried out to ensure that there are no “bugs” in the systems, which need to be taken care off. The key to configuration of a medical practice is to think ahead of time and make a plan. One must identify factors that are within your control, and then develop a plan that can help achieve the goals of the clinic.

6b. Office Scheduling and Hours

The patient population in this scenario works so the majority of individuals will electively see the doctor in the evenings or weekends. No matter what appointment hours, the guiding principle of any medical clinic is to get the patient seen when they present. With this methodology, the patient’s desire for an appointment may not match his/her needs for care, but it makes for excellent customer service. The other advantage of a multigroup specialty is that the appointment hours can be extended and physicians can rotate. However, before setting the appointment hour, it is important to identify the average number of same day appointments and then these numbers can be used to determine how many hours the clinic will be opened (Klassen et al, 1996). In general, Monday, Friday and weekends are the busiest days for appointments and hence, appointment hours should be extended on these days. Because of the working class population, early morning hours may be useful for some patients, who would like to see a doctor before work (Fisher, 2012).
In the end, the appointment times should be set to suit the doctor’s work style. Some doctors like to work fast and hence10-15 minute slots can be created. Doctors who provide more complex care such as obstetric or surgery may need long slots. Plus, obstetricians or surgeons are often called urgently for emergency surgeries/or delivers babies and hence, appointments are often canceled and rescheduled. Other factors that may influence appointments date include season, community events, vacations, late arrival and sick physicians. Performing a patient survey and assessing patient satisfaction can only determine the final apportionment schedule. It is also important not to forget the clinic staff and assess their satisfaction. With any new medical practice, there is initially a difficulty in transition and changes should be made gradually. By getting patients seen when they think they want to be seen, builds trust and long lasting relationships (Parente et al, 2005).


Fisher, S.E. (2012). 10 tips for effective appointment scheduling. Accessed on Feb 3, 2015.
Klassen, K. J., & Rohleder, T. R. (1996). Scheduling outpatient appointments in a dynamic environment. Journal of operations Management, 14(2), 83-101.
Murphy, T. P., & Soares, G. M. (2005, March). Setting Up a Medical Clinical Office. In Seminars in interventional radiology (Vol. 22, No. 1, p. 28). Thieme Medical Publishers.
Newbell, B.J. (2004). Starting a practice. My first year; Tough, but I made it. Accessed on Feb 3, 2015.
Parente, D. H., Pinto, M. B., & Barber, J. C. (2005). A pre-post comparison of service operational efficiency and patient satisfaction under open access scheduling. Health care management review, 30(3), 220-228.
Smith, P.D. (2003). Implementing an EMR System: One Clinic’s Experience. Accessed on Feb 3, 2015.

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