Medical Professional Publications

Urgent Appointment Promise

(From the October 2013 Issue of MedStat)

At Nationwide Children’s, we strive to schedule all patients in a timely manner, but we recognize that some patients need to be seen sooner than the standard process allows. That is why we have developed our Urgent Appointment Promise. If your patient has a truly urgent need to see a specialist, please call the Physician Direct Connect Line at (614) 355-0221. We will call the patient within one business day to schedule an appointment within five business days. The referring provider decides if the visit warrants an urgent appointment. We trust you to determine if a patient should be seen within five business days. We ask that providers recognize these appointments are reserved for truly urgent cases. Therefore, it is important that patients with less urgent needs are not seen ahead of those who need faster access.

The Urgent Appointment Promise applies to all pediatric subspecialties, except Behavioral Health. Nationwide Children’s, along with other institutions, continues to face high demand for behavioral health services. Look to future MedStat articles about exciting changes that will hopefully improve mental health access in the near future. Ultimately, we plan to include Behavioral Health in the Urgent Appointment process.

When the physician calls for an Urgent Appointment, please provide all the details you would want if you were receiving the referral including, but not limited to, the following:

  • Diagnosis/reason patient should be seen right away
  • Details about the urgency (if the diagnosis is not commonly an urgent case)
  • Any testing performed elsewhere which would not be available in the Nationwide Children’s system
  • List of current medications
  • Any additional relevant information

With this new initiative, Nationwide Children’s is not only offering a formal promise, we are reaffirming our commitment to work closely with primary care physicians and other referring providers.

For more information about our Urgent Appointment Promise or other referral and scheduling topics, please contact your Nationwide Children’s physician liaison.

Any questions about communication with the hospital can be directed to Lee Budin, MD at, Bill Long, MD at or Bruce Meyer, MD at They can also be reached at (614) 722-4550.

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Nationwide Children's Hospital
700 Children's Drive Columbus, Ohio 43205 614.722.2000