It was the main agenda at the last PAH Town Meeting, the focus of a Service Directors/Employee Council retreat and topic of strategic planning: how can we all partner to improve the patient experience at Pennsylvania Hospital?
While we continue to surpass new goals of clinical excellence, we all must help to develop new approaches and unique ways to also increase our patient satisfaction levels.
”This report was an important first-step in understanding from an outsiders perspective how we can make Pennsylvania Hospital ‘the best place for a patient to be a patient,’” said Executive Director, Michael Buckley, MD. “It was undertaken to determine the greatest needs and opportunities for improvement of the patient experience with input gleaned from our patients and staff.”
Here are some highlights from the report including opportunities for improvement.
“PAH provides life-saving therapies and excellent clinical care for thousands of patients a year. Nevertheless, patient satisfaction ratings at PAH lag behind other quality metrics. Compared to other hospital, PAH is consistently ranked in the second quartile (25-50 percent) nationwide for patient satisfaction.”
How can we do better?
Thanks to the input of our patients and staff, some terrific ideas to help improve the patient experience were discovered and will be shared with staff throughout the summer. Ideas included more targeted approaches such as:
- Increasing staff awareness to help close the gap between staff perceptions of satisfaction and actual patient satisfaction.
- Increasing the frequency of required interdisciplinary rounds to improve communication between support staff, nursing and physicians.
- Creating a “No Pass Zone” for all staff to reduce response time to patient calls which can be interpreted as a lack of concern for patients.
- Understand the difference between service excellence and an excellent patient EXPERIENCE of that service.
Other ideas included broader methods to achieve improvement:
- Encourage team-building to get all members “on the same page” and create collegiality.
- Modify staff training around the goal of improving the patient experience.
- Strive to make the best first impression on patients by streamlining the surgical intake process and reducing ED and admission wait times.
- Strive to create a positive patient experience. Smiling more, maintaining eye contact and taking a few extra moments to talk with patients goes a very long way!
You will be hearing lots more about this topic in the coming weeks and months.
We’re all on the same team and each need to do our part to commit to improving the patient experience.