By Azman Zakaria
Photo by Noor Azreen Awang
SERDANG, Jan 19-The long waiting hours customers seeking dental treatment at Universiti Putra Malaysia’s Perkhidmatan Pergigian, Pusat Kesihatan Universiti (PKU) have to endure, is now a thing of the past.
Under its Dental Appointment System @DensApptS, customers can choose a suitable time for an appointment to see the dentists before coming to the center.
The system which allows customers to arrange for their presence at the center was implemented following improvements made to the customers’ management system.
Eleven PKU officers and staff who named themselves UNICARE, developed the system after identifying the problem where customers have to spend long hours before they received dental treatment at the center, which is open for treatment from 8am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.
This innovation won second place during UPM’s Hari Kualiti & Inovasi Perkhidmatan 2015 (Quality & Innovative Service Day 2015) under the Kumpulan Inovatif dan Kreatif (Innovative and Creative Group) category.
PKU Dental Officer, Dr. Ahmad Kamarul Juperi, who is also the group’s facilitator, said the appointment system was developed to enable customers to set their own suitable time to come for treatment, according to their work or study schedule.
“Under the system, they have to discuss with us a suitable time where they can come for treatment and this, indirectly, helps put an end to the long waiting hours which customers have to endure under the old system,” he said in an interview.
Customers no longer have to wait long before they see the dentist. This will enable them to give more focus on their daily routines, study or other activities.
“The waiting time for customers before they receive treatment is reduced significantly while the number of customers has seen an increase, and this has created a conducive working environment for both customers and dental personnel,” he said.
Dr. Ahmad Kamarul also said with the system, waiting time is reduced from 55 minutes to 13 minutes, a saving of 42 minutes, surpassing the target set by the Health Ministry for waiting time to be less than 30 minutes.
“In the past, when the quota for customers seeking treatment is met, other customers who still have not got the queue number, have to come back on another day or time.
“There were cases where they had to come back a few times and endure long waiting hours before they received the treatment. There were also cases where they were forced to skip their lectures or take leave in order to get dental treatment,” he said.
He added that the system would help smoothen the dental treatment service, with an average of 10,000 customers each year to four dental officers and 12 supporting staff.
Since its implementation in January 2015, it has received positive feedback from customers who mainly said they were satisfied with the service.
Dr. Ahmad Kamarul is assisted by other team members - Fairus Mohamad (leader), Nalitha Hazirah Norman, Zanita Aini Zainal Aripin, DK Masni PG Kifli, Wan Nurul Ain Wan Zahidi, Hazri Mohd @ Ghazani, Mohd Rosli Sabri, Idris Amri, Nur Ain Sa’adah Ghozali and Liana Suratman @ Suraman. – UPM
Sekolah Pengajian Siswazah
Universiti Putra Malaysia
43400 UPM Serdang
Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia