Accessibility is a key element of an effective primary care system. Literature has outlined that primary care practices have successfully employed an advanced access scheduler to improve accessibility to booked appointments and consequently enhance patient experience and outcomes. In 2015, a Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) primary care facility in Ottawa trialed an advanced access scheduler. Based on the unique characteristics of a CAF medical clinic and the patient population, this trial produced six critical lessons, which include maintenance of a stable base of clinicians, correcting rostering mismatches, eliminating appointment backlogs, acquiring required information systems, improved understanding of patient demand and communicating changes effectively. These lessons may be utilized by similar organizations to successfully integrate an advanced access scheduler within their primary care facilities.
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