Factors responsible for prolong waiting time of patients seeking eye care at a tertiary health facility
Keywords:Eyecare, Prolong, Satisfaction, Tertiary, Waiting time
Prolong waiting time can cause poor utilization of health facility because it causes discontent among patients. The purpose of this study was to determine waiting time of patients attending the eye department of the tertiary centre and to assess the factors responsible for prolong waiting time and give recommendations on how to improve the uptake of the health facility by reducing waiting time of patients. Methods: A quantitative, descriptive,
observational study of all patients both old and new attending ophthalmology department of the tertiary centre between January and February 2017was done. Results: A total of 171 respondents were seen, out of which 72(42.1%) were new patients and the others were follow up patients. There were 71 males and 100 females with male: female ratio of 1:1.4. The respondents waiting time from registration to doctors consulting room ranged
from11minutes to 5.24hours with mean time of 2.67 hours ±1.04 hours. Almost two-third of the patients111 (64.9%) waited for over an hour before being seen by eye doctors. The total time spent with the eye doctors ranged from 3mins to 3.50hours with mean time of 1.09hours ±1.02hours. Socio-demographic characteristics of the patients did not significantly influence the time spent in the eye facility. Majority of follow up patients( 84.7%)spent lesser time
with the eye specialist compared with new patients(15.3%). Two third of the patients 66% that spent 0-1hour with eye specialists were very satisfied compared with7% of patients that were dissatisfied. Conclusion: Despite the prolonged waiting and time spent with eye specialist caused by plethora of factors, the level of patient satisfaction was still high .To reduce this prolonged waiting time, government through the hospital management needs to provide a reliable alternative power supply to the department, employ more qualified staff and improve the existing workers both the eye specialists and other allied health professionals through capacity building. This will ultimately improve the uptake of this facility.
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