This case study is the third part of a three-part study examining the impact of an online appointment scheduling system on physician office scheduling. The purpose of the study was to understand patients' experiences when booking appointments through an online appointment scheduling system. A 24-question patient survey gathered perspectives from registered adult patients who had booked by either channel from August 8, 2008, to February 28, 2009. The online scheduling system was used by 128 unique patients, while 1,831 booked by telephone. Of the respondents, 186 were aware of the system but had not booked online, 107 were not aware of the system and 105 had booked online. Patients chose to book online for convenience, control and choice. Most patients found the online system to be as easy as booking by telephone, and all who booked online said they would do so again. Chi-square tests showed a dependent relationship between a patient's likelihood of using an online scheduling system and frequency of Internet use. A dependent relationship was also found between a patient's likelihood of using an online scheduling system and computer aptitude. There was no relationship between age, gender, education level or years as a patient with the physician.
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