HCA Midwest Health - March 09, 2018

Why do I have to wait weeks for a procedure?

Waiting for a medical procedure is the worst, especially when you know what you need…and then can’t do it. Why does it take so long to get a procedure done?

There can be many reasons medical procedures aren’t done right away. Some of them are what you would expect them to be.

  • Scheduling. You need a doctor and facility that can handle the procedure. Operating rooms, other types of treatment units and equipment may be booked in advance. Doctors are booked, too.
  • Insurance. In most cases, your insurance provider has to approve or certify a non-emergency procedure. Getting that approval can take time.
  • Preparatory work time. Sometimes, the procedure you need may take advance prep work (e.g., a stress test, colonoscopy). Prep work can add time into the process, especially if they require their own scheduling.

What are we doing at HCA Midwest Health to make this process easier?

HCA Midwest Health has 150 facilities and works with more than 2,000 affiliated physicians, providing you better access to more convenient, quality healthcare. With so many facilities to choose from, we’ve developed centralized scheduling, making it convenient for you to schedule your procedures where and when you want them, regardless of which facility you need. In many cases, if all preparatory work has been completed, we can schedule the same or next day. Look, we know that having a procedure can be stressful. Scheduling an appointment shouldn’t be.

Because of the larger, centralized system in place at HCA Midwest Health facilities, rescheduling of procedures is pretty rare. We know last minute changes are frustrating, especially if you have been fasting or doing prep work before a procedure or surgery. You may have heard that most same-day rescheduling is because of the lack of the room or equipment, which is true nationwide—but not at HCA Midwest Health. Most of our last minute changes are related to patient health changes or cancellations/rescheduling linked to weather, which delays patients or staff members.

We’d love to control the weather, but that’s not happening yet. We leverage everything within our control to bring you the best possible health experience. Each and every day.

You can help yourself avoid delays by pre-registering for your procedure. Pre-registration will start the process for approval or certification from your insurer. It also gives you a better idea about what to expect and what pre-op tests you need or instructions you need to follow.