, Volume 11, Issue 4, pp 237-239

Predicting daily visits to a waik-in clinic and emergency department using calendar and weather data

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We studied the association between calendar and weather variables and daily unscheduled patient volume in a walk-in clinic and emergency department. Calendar variables (season, week of month, day of week, holidays, and federal check delivery days) and weather variables (high temperature and snowfall) forecasted clinic volume, explaining 84% of daily variance and 44% of weekday variance. Staffing according to predicted volume could have decreased overstaffing from 59%to 15% of days, but would have increased under-staffing from 2% to 18% of days. Models using calendar and weather data that forecast local utilization may help to schedule staffing for walk-in clinics and emergency departments more efficiently.

Presented in part before the 18th Annual Society of General Internal Medicine National Meeting, San Diego, California, May 6, 1995.