DNA policy

DNA (Did not attend)

The practice has a very good attendance rate for their appointments, more than 97% attend on time thanks to the punctuality and patiences of all of you who have made the effort to keep and attend on time. Also we have had a good rate of successful cancellations of appointment with patients now cancelling up to 24 hours before their appointment via SMS or telephoning before hand (>24 hours, 1 working day).

However, there are a few patients who are still missing appointments which is called Did not attend (DNA) i.e. the patient does not attend their appointment and does not contact the surgery in advance (i.e. 1 working day or 24 hours) to cancel or change it. The effect of these are:

  • An increase in the waiting time for appointments

  • Frustration for both staff and patients

  • Costs the NHS billions of pounds per year

  • Prevents someone else who is sick to be seen sooner

Unfortunately patients frequently missing booked appointments is a wasted resource that other patients nor the surgery cannot accept

DNA policy

When patients register they are given a copy of the DNA policy for which they should abide by. Patients can be sent SMS appointment reminders for their pre-booked appointments which include reminders to our DNA policy below. It is the duty of the patient to remember and attend their pre booked appointment. If a patient fails to attend a pre-booked appointment (doctor or nurse) then this is considered to be a missed or DNA appointment. Patients who are offered a telephone appointment and given a time period for the doctor to call them then fail to pick up the call during this appointment is also considered as a DNA. The doctor, however, may try more than once to call you if you fail to pick up the call on the first time of calling. Since you had missed the original call, this would be considered as a DNA. For face to face appointments, DNAs are when patients arrive 5 or more minutes later than their appointment time.

3 or more missed appointment

If a patient fails to attend 3 or more appointments a letter explaining that they are to be removed from the practice list will be sent but information as to how to register at a new surgery can be included.

Same day appointments

If the patient is offered a same day or urgent appointment and DNA without reason, this will be taken seriously and would breach our DNA policy. Their attendances may be reviewed by the surgery and the patient may be warned about further attendance.

Late arrival policy

We recommend all patients to arrive on time for their appointments. However, if a patient arrives more than 5 minutes late for their appointment then this will be considered as a missed appointment or DNA. If the patient contacts the practice in advance and notifies them that they are running up to 5 minutes late, the patient may be seen and accommodated but this will be at the nurse or doctor's discretion.