Mobile telephone short message service reminders can reduce nonattendance in physical therapy outpatient clinics: a randomized controlled trial.
OBJECTIVE: To investigate whether short message service (SMS) reminders reduce nonattendance in physical therapy outpatient clinics.
DESIGN: Prospective single-blinded randomized controlled trial.
SETTING: Two physical therapy outpatient departments in metropolitan acute public hospitals.
PARTICIPANTS: Participants with an appointment in a physical therapy outpatient clinic and who provided a contact mobile telephone number were included. Participants were excluded if their appointment was scheduled for the same day on which they made the appointment.
INTERVENTION: Participants allocated to the intervention group received an SMS reminder before their next appointment; participants allocated to the control group did not receive a reminder.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: The primary outcome was rate of nonattendance without cancellation. Secondary outcomes were cancellation and attendance rates and exploration of other factors associated with nonattendance.
RESULTS: Patients (N=679) were allocated to receive either an SMS reminder (n=342) or no reminder (n=337). The nonattendance rate for patients who did not receive a reminder (16%) was more than nonattendance for patients receiving the SMS reminder (11%; odds ratio, 1.61; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.03-2.51; number needed to treat, 19; 95% CI, 9-275). There were no differences in cancellation or attendance rates between groups. Exploration of other factors found that patients who were younger with a neck and trunk musculoskeletal or a neuromuscular disorder and who were scheduled to have an initial appointment or an appointment on a Monday or Friday were significantly predictive of increased nonattendance.
CONCLUSIONS: SMS reminders can reduce nonattendance in physical therapy outpatient clinics.
- [Non-attendance at a pediatric outpatient clinic. SMS text messaging improves attendance].
- Effectiveness of mobile-phone short message service (SMS) reminders for ophthalmology outpatient appointments: observational study.
- Short message service (SMS) can enhance compliance and reduce cancellations in a sedation gastrointestinal endoscopy center: a prospective randomized controlled trial.
- A randomized blinded controlled trial of mobile phone reminders on the follow-up medical care of HIV-exposed and HIV-infected children in Cameroon: study protocol (MORE CARE).
- The effect of short messaging service text on non-attendance in a general ophthalmology clinic.