For those not in the business, "no-shows" is the term for the patients who miss their appointments. There are only so many slots in a doctor's schedule each day and these no-shows can be really problematic. How problematic depends on how you get paid. If you are not salaried or work on productivity or own your practice then no-shows are a nightmare. You lose money for that time slot. Also, the patients that are truly needing to get in have to wait while that visit goes empty. Most offices will have a no-show policy that states if you miss three appointments then you are dismissed from the practice. What about in a system where you are a salaried physician? This is as close to a "socialized medicine" example as I can give you. My experience is that the doctor now doesn't care about no-shows because it just gives him or her more of a break in his or her day. To prove that, here is a BBC article about no-shows that gives their perspective. A legal adviser writes this column and explains that millions of missed appointments occur each year over there. Without the financial incentive, it seems the individual offices are not driven to remind the patients to show up. What a surprise? If you want to get a chuckle then really read the piece because I think you will find it quite amusing how she makes the case that doctors not only should chase down the patients but are legally at risk for anything that happens to them when they don't show up. Is there any personal responsibility left in this world?