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Public-images-osm logo.svg walk-in
The Doctor is in.jpg
Whether a given amenity serves walk-in customers or requires customers to enroll. Particularly of interest for healthcare. Show/edit corresponding data item.
Group: properties
Used on these elements
may be used on nodesmay be used on waysmay be used on areas (and multipolygon relations)may be used on relations
Status: in use

The key walk-in=* documents whether an amenity (such as a amenity=clinic or amenity=doctors serves walk-in customers, or if it requires customers to enroll before serving them.

The tag is not widely used, but is very slowly gaining traction, especially in Ontario and Florida.

The original editor meant for this to document a distinction Ontario's health care system makes:

  • a "walk-in clinic" is a doctor's office that serves anyone that walks in the door
  • regular doctor's offices require that a patient register/enroll with them, and in some areas often do not register new patients due to lack of doctor time

This system is also used in Florida, and possibly other states as well.

A amenity=doctors will help you if you stumble in the door with a medical emergency, but for less acute illnesses it might be of interest whether you can expect to walk in the door and be seen by a doctor: unexpected headaches, non-severe pains, sick notes, etc.

  • walk-in=no: medical practice does not normally serve walk-in patients. Usually "doctor's office", "family clinic".
  • walk-in=yes: medical practice serves walk-in patients. Walk-in clinics might allow people to make appointments - the distinction is that anyone can make an appointment.
  • walk-in=only: medical practice that only serves walk-in patients, and does not register/"roster" any patients permanently. It might be difficult to confirm in quick surveys whether a practice is walk-in=only or yes - if in doubt, default to yes as it is less strict (leaves open possibility that the practice might enroll patients in addition to serving walk-in patients).

There also exist:

  • reservation=* - whether a reservation, e.g. by phone, is recommended before visiting an amenity
  • booking=* - indicates whether booking is possible or even required at an amenity; or if it is first-come, first-serve

Getting an appointment at a hairdresser or a restaurant, or making a camp site booking, is often a matter of calling and giving your name and phone number, and there is no expectation that you won't go elsewhere next week. In contrast, a person in Ontario (or Florida) has a primary-care provider, but might go to a walk-in clinic in minor emergencies (as listed above).

Enrolling: you are connected with this doctor and they are your default provider from now on. Appointment or reservation: "please hold a spot for me at 6pm".