Getting Routine Care Quickly

What This Indicator Measures

This indicator tracks the percentage of Western New York health plan customers that reported that they "always" were able to get routine care at a doctor's office or clinic as soon as they thought they needed it.

Why This Measure Matters

The ease with which patients receive appointments with their doctors for routine care - fundamental to maintaining health and monitoring chronic conditions - is a measure of the system's level of coordination and efficiency, not to mention its capacity in providing care. It also suggests flexibility in accommodating the needs of the patient, whose scheduling may be restricted by employment, transportation or family responsibilities. Also, patient perceptions regarding the ease with which they are able to get an appointment can affect their confidence in the continuity of care and their subsequent decision to either see their primary care physician or go to the emergency room.

% of Health Plan Customers Reporting That They Always Were Able To Get An Appointment At Their Doctor's Office or Clinic As Soon As They Thought They Needed

Data Sources & Notes

This chart presents summary level results from the CAHPS Health Plan survey conducted in 2008, as provided by the New York State Department of Health. CAHPS, which stands for Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems, provides a national standard for collecting and reporting patient perspectives on the care received through health plans. Over 1,350 commercial enrollees and 1,750 Medicaid enrollees of Independent Health, HealthNow and Univera completed the survey in 2008. Respondents are queried over the phone, by mail, or internet, with the survey asking health plan members about health care services received in 2007. The survey question for this indicator was "In the last 12 months, not counting the times you needed care right away, how often did you get an appointment for your health care at a doctor's office or clinic as soon as you thought you needed?" Possible responses to this question were "always," "usually," "sometimes" and "never." Survey responses are not adjusted for enrollee demographic factors such as age, education level and general health status, which may impact how satisfied health plan enrollees are with the services provided and cause different results across similar health plans. Western New York averages reflect enrollment-weighted averages, while national averages are from the 2008 CAHPS Health Plan Survey Chartbook.

WNY Health Care Priorities

Learn how this indicator informs these WNY Health Care Priorities:

Measuring Methods

How we measured WNY health care performance in five priority areas (...read more)