In 2019, the total number of patients who did not attend their outpatient appointment, or failed to give staff sufficient notice to make the appointments available to other patients, in hospitals across the Western Trust area was 9,260.
Each missed appointment costs the Trust £170, which equates to £1.5millon lost to our health and social care budget in 2019.
Geraldine McKay, Director of Acute Hospitals for the Western Trust said: “We understand that there are many genuine reasons why people are not able to make an appointment however, as these figures show every missed appointment is a lost opportunity for someone else to be seen. The appointment slot is an actual time with a member of our clinical and nursing staff who are dedicated to patient care.
“Therefore, for 2020 we are asking for the public’s cooperation in reducing non-attendance for hospital outpatient appointments so that valuable resources and staff time is not wasted, as this will have a significant impact on already overstretched health service."