Why Patients Should Schedule Early Doctor Appointments
Everyone has their own internal clock that controls energy levels and mental focus. As a result, we all have our individual peak work performance periods.
Yet, medical studies have found that most people lose energy and focus after they eat and as the hours in their work schedules progress.
Doctors aren’t super human. Like the rest of us, they slow down, lose focus and become more fatigued, and potentially irritable or angry, as their day unfolds. This process can actually happen sooner for some depending on the amount and type of work they’re doing.
Specialist Keith Mann showed me a recent study about this issue called “Time of Day and the Decision to Prescribe Antibiotics,” published on October 6th through JAMA Internal Medicine. It revealed that doctors who saw 21,687 respiratory infection patients over 18 months handed out more prescriptions for antibiotics hour-by-hour.
What does this means for patients? A patient should try to schedule medical appointments for the first half of his doctor’s work day. Specifically, he should try to schedule for late morning so that he’s not also dealing with a doctor who is fatigued from eating or distracted by pre-mealtime hunger.