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Average Call Length?

QUESTION:

Our Call Center provides Appointment scheduling and Nurse Triage. I was surfing the web trying to find information about Telephone Triage standards for:
  • Average talk time
  • Average Wrap up
  • Average call handling time
Can you help or point me in the right direction? Your help would be greatly appreciated.
ANSWER:
I'm not aware of any “standards” addressing those metrics. Rather, what you might find is averages in certain settings. For example, I'd think that perhaps McKesson would know that information for their call centers in aggregate. Perhaps LVM or Sharp Focus have that info as well. I think that at one time, Solucient published some data about their clients.
Informally, as I travel around the country, I'm finding that average call length is probably in the neighborhood of 8-12 minutes. Some are doing 7 minute calls and some call centers are telling their nurses to take 4 triage calls/hour, but the average will vary depending on population, software, nursing style, etc.
I think the more relevant question is whether they're doing a good job. Are they doing an adequate assessment before they select the protocol? Are they using clinical judgment? Is there evidence of all 5 steps of the nursing process? So many variables impact time, I think it's a risky indicator… I believe that the standard should be focused on quality of care and process rather than time.