Improving Whatcom County Health Department's WIC Scheduling Efficiencies Using Quality Improvement Techniques
As of July 2013, 1,966 Women, Infants, and Children Program (WIC)–eligible individuals on Medicaid were not participating in a WIC program in Whatcom County. The project aimed to increase capacity to serve additional clients. The mission was to increase the number of eligible WIC clients served, by maximizing use of available appointment time, by August 1, 2013. To achieve this goal, the team needed to address program inefficiencies so the caseload could be increased from a stable 2,200. Process improvements were identified to address scheduling inefficiencies and to address the high number of missed and rescheduled appointments that resulted in unfilled appointment slots in the WIC schedule and created additional staff work. Once the team began, it realized that the original goal of increasing the number of WIC clients served AND improving the efficiency and quality of services for clients were not easily accomplished simultaneously. The team decided to focus first on process improvements to increase scheduling efficiencies and improve customer service. This would create additional appointment availability, a first step in serving additional clients. The team still retained the long-term objective of serving additional WIC-eligible clients. The project targets were as follows: • Decrease the average percentage of no-show appointments from 16.97% to 15%. • Increase the WIC appointment completion rate from 67.91% to 70.0%. • Decrease unfilled available appointment time by 5%.
Molaski, K. Public Health Quality Improvement Exchange. Improving Whatcom County Health Department's WIC Scheduling Efficiencies Using Quality Improvement Techniques. Wed, 02/11/2015 - 15:40. Available at https://www.phqix.org/content/improving-whatcom-county-health-departments-wic-scheduling-efficiencies-using-quality. Accessed May 26, 2018.