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CHARLOTTE, N.C., Aug. 22, 2016 – Carolinas HealthCare System today announced the system-wide launch of a convenient new service that will allow patients to electronically reserve a spot in line at all 28 of its urgent care locations in the region. Use of the reservation system has already cut wait times an average of 64 percent across three pilot locations.
For decades, urgent cares have been built as walk-in facilities, with no way of reserving a time to see a provider. Now, patients can treat an urgent care visit the same way they treat checking in for an airline reservation or a rapid pick-up order at restaurant – by making a few clicks on a phone or tablet. Patients have the ability to wait from a convenient place – whether it’s on their couch or at a coffee shop – and still get in to see an urgent care provider.
“One of my biggest concerns was bringing my daughter into the doctor and sitting in the ‘sick room’ for an indefinite amount of time. I always preferred to stand outside, no matter the weather,” said Karen Sullivan, a Carolinas HealthCare System patient. “After I started reserving a spot in line, I haven’t waited more than five minutes in the waiting room. It takes a lot of stress off of our family.”
To reserve a spot online at a Carolinas HealthCare System urgent care location, patients can use a tablet, smartphone or computer. One of the easiest ways to reserve a spot is through the Carolinas HealthCare System “Carolinas” app, which is available on the iTunes store and on Google Play. Using the app, patients can log on, find an urgent care close to them and click ‘Reserve Your Spot’ to sign up for a time. Once patients select an urgent care reservation time and opt in to receive text message updates, they will receive alerts when the reservation time is approaching.
“Our top priority is to give our patients the best care possible so they can get back to their daily lives feeling better as soon as possible. We want to ensure their entire experience is outstanding along the way,” said Steve Jones, vice president, Carolinas HealthCare System’s urgent care division. “Through the new online reservation system, a parent tending to a sick child at home doesn’t have to leave home until it’s close to their urgent care reservation. Someone who’s sick at work doesn’t need to take time off to sit in an urgent care waiting room for hours. We’re cutting down on inefficient uses of time and accommodating everyone’s busy schedules, while creating a more seamless experience for our urgent care patients.”
The initiative is part of Carolinas HealthCare System’s overarching goal to respond to patients’ need for on-demand care, while ensuring patients get high quality care.
“As we strive to transform care delivery, our overarching goal is to provide our patients seamless access to coordinated, high-quality healthcare – and to make that high level of care readily accessible to people, regardless of where they live,” said Alfred Kendrick, MD, medical director of Carolinas HealthCare System's urgent care division. “Now, we have made urgent care availability as easy as possible. Patients can wait at a convenient place and reserve a spot that works for their schedule.”
To find a Carolinas HealthCare System urgent care location, reserve a spot and check wait times, visit carolinashealthcare.org/urgentcare.
Carolinas HealthCare System, one of the nation’s leading and most innovative healthcare organizations, provides a full spectrum of healthcare and wellness programs throughout North and South Carolina. Its diverse network of care locations includes academic medical centers, hospitals, freestanding emergency departments, physician practices, surgical and rehabilitation centers, home health agencies, nursing homes and behavioral health centers, as well as hospice and palliative care services. Carolinas HealthCare System works to enhance the overall health and wellbeing of its communities through high quality patient care, education and research programs, and numerous collaborative partnerships and initiatives.