How healthcare providers are redesigning the waiting room experience

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Waiting rooms have traditionally been where patients fill out paper forms with medical information and wait to see their physician. But amid the COVID-19 pandemic, changes focused on technology, the consumer experience and public health have occurred, The Wall Street Journal reported May 23.

One example is San Antonio's TSAOG Orthopaedics. The practice's COO, Chris Kean, told the newspaper the group's new location includes a lobby with high ceilings, lounge chairs, an endless counter and has a similar feel to a hotel lobby. She also told the newspaper that a software program called Clinic Q, created by Health Here, allows patients to answer questionnaires from home, before their appointment, and view cost estimates based on insurance coverage.

Another example came from Brian Chong, MD, who leads Rochester, Minn.-based Mayo Clinic's campus expansion in Phoenix. In the report, Dr. Chong said a feature being developed for the health system's app will allow patients to receive information related to their appointment once they arrive on campus, such as the closest parking spot and whether their physician is running late. He also told The Wall Street Journal long, linear waiting spaces with isolated seating areas are being built as part of Mayo's new clinic design in Phoenix.

In addition to these changes, patient waiting rooms have also gone virtual. University Hospitals in Cleveland deployed virtual waiting rooms last October, allowing patients to virtually check in and wait in their vehicles for their appointments.

Read The Wall Street Journal's full article here.

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