Consultations in a Medical Center Setting

Consultation

A process or procedure, usually in the form of a face-to-face meeting, with a professional in order to seek opinions and advices.

Patient Consultation

A process or procedure, usually in the form of a face-to-face meeting, of a patient with a health care professional, such as a physician, dentist, psychologist, etc. in order to seek opinions and advices.

Medical Consultation

A process or procedure, usually in the form of a face-to-face meeting, of a health professional with another health care professional in order to seek opinions and advices.

Elements of Patient Consultation

A patient consultation includes diagnosis of the patient’s health concerns followed by advices and prescriptions if indicated.  A patient consultation diagnosis is derived from interview to get symptom-clues, review of the medical history and physical examination to get the sign-clues.  Prescriptions may either be for further diagnostic tests or for medications. Treatment, usually minor procedure, if done during the patient consultation, is considered as a process or procedure separate from consultation.

Elements of Medical Consultation

A medical consultation includes diagnosis of the patient’s health concerns followed by advices.  A medical consultation diagnosis is derived from interview of the patient to get symptom-clues, review of the medical history and physical examination to get the sign-clues.  Prescriptions may be recommended either be for further diagnostic tests or for medications. Treatment may likewise be recommended. However, prescriptions and treatment are considered processes or procedures separate from the medical consultation.

Areas in Medical Center Where Patient and Medical Consultations Can Occur

Patient consultations and medical consultations can occur in any areas of the hospital or medical center – department of emergency medical services; department of outpatient services; department of inpatient services; specialty clinics; etc.

Importance of Knowing the Difference between Patient and Medical Consultations

It is important to clarify the concepts of consultation, patient consultation and medical consultation in a hospital or medical center setting so as to have promote common understanding and avoid misunderstanding among the patients, the staff of the medical center, and the accredited insurance health companies.  Patient consultation is different from medical consultation.  Patient consultation does not include procedural treatment but may include prescriptions.  The elements of patient consultation are not exactly the same as those of medical consultation which just consists of diagnosis and advices or recommendations.

With delineation of the differences, costing or pricing of the processes or procedures, particularly in a private hospital or medical center setting, can be made accordingly.  Example, the costing or pricing of the consultation will not include that of the procedural treatment.  There will be separate cost or price for the procedural treatment.  Another example, the costing or pricing of the patient consultation may be different from that of medical consultation.

ROJ-TPOR@16sept21

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6 Responses to Consultations in a Medical Center Setting

  1. Chandrakant Bhosale says:

    Dear Sir,

    Happy to read your blog as always. I have query over this post.

    What is the adequate time for consultant for outpatient and inpatient?

    Regards

    • reyojoson says:

      It all depends on the hospital policies.

      If consultants are employed and full-time, then duty hours could be whole day during office hours for outpatient departments. Or half-day, depending on the arrangement by the hospital.
      If consultants are part-time, then part-time but should have fixed scheduled.

      For inpatients, the principles are the same. Again,depending on hospital policies.

      Bottomline, there is adequate coverage of the inpatients and outpatients by assigned consultants.

      Hope this helps.

      Dr Rey

      • Chandrakant Bhosale says:

        Thank you Dr. Rey for your valuable reply. To be specific I just wanted to know what time slot is 15-20 min for consultation and evaluation for each patient.

  2. reyojoson says:

    Oh, on your specific question, again it all depends. It all depends on the specialty, type of patients, old or new, difficult patient or not. For example, my practice, I allot 15 min for the run of the mill patients (old patients, follow-up in my practice that focuses on breast and thyroid cases or general surgery). For new patients, I have to allot more time, say 20 to 30 minutes. Yes, the average time slot can be 15-20 minutes with some adjustment. In my clinic, I practice booked appointment. I follow certain guides but I adjust accordingly. I just promise my patients at the moment they will not wait for more than 75 minutes. I said at the moment, as I just started the booked appointment scheme. I started with a promise that no patients will wait for more than 90 minutes (in the Philippines, the waiting time of patients are longer than 90 minutes). After 2 months trial, I brought the promise to 75 minutes. As I polish my scheme, I may bring it down to 60 minutes or less. My average waiting time for patients right now is about 20 minutes. The range is from zero to less than 40 minutes at the moment. For details of my booked appointment scheme, pls visit https://sites.google.com/site/rojosonmedicalclinic/booked-appointment-performance—august-2016 thanks. Dr. Rey

  3. Chandrakant Bhosale says:

    Dear Dr. Reynolds

    Great to know!!! I also visited the Performance Monitoring Site.

    After allocating time for the consulting, have seen the emergency cases in between?

    On average with a 8 hours shift you could see maximum 30-45 patients a day right?

    For speeding up process can a clinical assistant or nursing staff make your help in consultation time to 5-10 minute?

  4. reyojoson says:

    Of course, there may be emergency cases. As much as possible, do not cancel those patients who waited in line already. If not avoidable, explain and apologize.

    Yes, more or less.

    Yes, too, you can use a lot of other strategies to cut down the consultation time but case to case always. No two patients are the same in the consultation proper.

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