|Q: I am looking for a software package to help with call scheduling for a four person-gastroenterology practice. It should be a program that can keep up with the number of weekends worked, holidays worked, days off, and vacations taken. -Dr. Carl Kellum (Tupelo, Miss.)
A: Doctors on Call Schedule, by Acme Express, Inc., Cleveland, Ohio, (216) 621-3400, was the top-rated scheduling program compared in the December 1992 Medical Software Reviews, (718) 499-5910.
DOCS, which sells for $1,500, establishes rules for on/off requests, vacations, rotations, expertise coverage and same day assignments.
For example, DOCS can set a rule that if you are on call one day, you will not be on call for the next two days. Each physician has an "account" and a Monte Carlo technique assigns the next slot to the staffer with the lowest balance. The program was written by a physicist to help his brother, an anesthesiologist, schedule a practice grougp.