What is the Average Wait Time for Appointments at Healthcare Facilities in Louisville KY?

Getting the best experience and staying connected to your community is easy with the Spectrum News app. On Tuesday at noon, some of Norton Healthcare's immediate care clinics had wait times that exceeded 10 hours for walk-ins. Mary Rademaker, executive director of Norton Immediate Care Centers and Norton Prompt Care, attributed the surge in COVID-19 cases to the long wait times. Rademaker reported that clinics have seen a record number of patients, with around 70% being treated or tested for coronavirus.

In order to address the issue, Norton Healthcare is taking steps to expand its testing and self-service site once again. The express location on Breckinridge Lane will soon offer a kid-only lane. There was a steady flow of traffic there on Tuesday afternoon and appointments must be made. Rademaker suggested that people in need arrive early and have their place in line reserved for them, so they can wait at home and receive a notification of their shift by text message. Alternatively, he recommended Norton's telehealth services as an option for those who don't want to wait in line.

He urged people not to rush to emergency rooms unless absolutely necessary. There have already been issues with that, he explained. Spectrum News 1 also visited UofL Health Tuesday, which also reported long waiting times at clinics. A spokesperson said that crowds can lead to a wait of five hours or more. They are prioritizing patients who need medical care, in addition to COVID testing.

As healthcare continues to assess how the decrease in the provider workforce may affect patients' access to care, it is important to consider how changes in payments may also affect access to care. The disparity in wait time for consultations by region was striking; in San Diego, patients wait an average of 55 days to see an orthopedic surgeon, while those in Washington, DC only wait five days. As a result, UnityPoint Health has implemented a new scheduling process for its urgent care and urgent care centers in central Iowa, requiring all patients to book an appointment online instead of going walk-ins for care. Interestingly, the typical wait time for family medicine appointments has decreased, suggesting that it might be easier for a new patient to go to primary care. Waiting times in dermatology were up to 84 days in Portland, Oregon, and just nine days in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. In essence, any health center that allows patients to come walk-ins for walk-in treatment could be considered a walk-in clinic. In Kentucky, another woman reported that her family member waited 23 hours in the emergency room at Norton Audubon Hospital last week.

This is why walk-in clinics have grown faster than any other healthcare service in the United States.

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