The success or failure of any organization depends on the quality of service they provide to the customers. In case of healthcare organizations, patient satisfaction is of prime concern. These establishments work day-in and day-out to improve the quality of patient service, provide exceptional patient care, and enhance the patient experience.
Quality of Service is Indicated by Patient Experience Measures
Patient satisfaction surveys play a very important role in assisting healthcare institutions to transition to value-based healthcare services. Recent research states that quality of care is directly influenced by patient experience. But, in spite of various factors influencing organizations to pay more attention to patient satisfaction, many healthcare providers are still skeptical about it due to conflicting research. Some studies state that patient experience has no relation with the quality of care, while other studies found that it is directly associated with better outcomes.
Major Factors Influencing the Patient Experience of Care
Even though there are many inconsistencies in terms of defining patient experience, research states that improvement in patient experience and development in quality of care are clearly connected. There are five major procedures that can help healthcare organizations in radically improving patient experiences and utilizing innovative technology to their advantage.
Proper Monitoring of Patient Satisfaction and Implementation of Appropriate Measures
Improving patient experience is a basic and necessary approach towards improving outcomes. If a patient is given proper treatment and is receiving proper care from the doctors and nurses, then they will feel better about the hospital authority. As a result, they will properly follow the treatment recommendations. Institutions should use patient satisfaction as a balance measure, and not as a catalyst for outcomes. Balance measures assist health systems in making proper quality of care improvements and also taking care of potential negative impacts. Using patient experience as balance measure also helps healthcare institutions make sure that improvements one area doesn’t hamper another area.
Evaluation of the Complete Care Team
A major step towards the improvement of patient care experience is to gather data as a whole instead of gathering information about individual care interactions. Surveys should be conducted to assess not only individuals, but also the entire team. They should include individual oriented questions along with questions that concern the entire team, like ‘how well were the nurses and physicians working together’, and so on.
Judicious Utilization of Healthcare Analytics
Systems have to understand, use, and act on the patient satisfaction data to improve the patient experience. Concerned authorities can use an enterprise data warehouse and patient experience applications to research and identify how patient experience, clinical outcomes, and employee satisfaction are related.
Patient satisfaction data not only informs about patient satisfaction or a single episode of care, in fact, it tells a bigger story. It helps authorities to understand and analyze data by demographics and also in setting improvement goals. It also provides various opinions on the data that the patients provide about their experience. It becomes easy to access and understand patient satisfaction data using analytical systems and tools, as it narrates about the entire care delivery.
Implementing Innovative Technology
Innovations and advancements in healthcare technology are playing an indispensible role in revolutionizing the patient experience. Healthcare organizations are using a variety of technologies in order to improve the patient experience. They are employing interactive tools to improve way finding and reduce stress for patients and visitors. Many hospitals are also introducing real-time location service technology that improves patient flow and reduces wait times. Many hospitals are using communication devices and electronic feedback systems that alert staff in real time. Authorities are also installing interactive education systems which provide essential information to the students about their care. Moreover, smart rooms in hospitals provide patients the option of customizing the environment of waiting rooms, examination rooms, and during crucial treatments and procedures.
Enhancing Employee Involvement
For any healthcare organization, employee engagement is a very crucial factor. Hospitals and other healthcare providers are increasingly paying attention to realize and understand how employee engagement is influencing patient experience. Many hospitals are introducing the post of Chief Patient Experience Officer to make sure that the patients receive the best treatment and healthcare experience. They have realized the importance of factors like infrastructure, employee training, and engagement facilities, and the relation between satisfied employees and contented patients. In order to maintain proper patient satisfaction, hospitals will need an engaged and dedicated staff, the appropriate technologies and systems to make data-driven decisions, and a positive and healthy organizational culture.
The Overall Status of the Healthcare System is Indicated by Patient Experience
Healthcare systems are continuing to pay more attention to patient experience as an important indicator of a healthcare organization’s overall condition. An excellent patient experience is not only influenced by the interaction between the patient and the doctor, but is also affected by everyone and everything involved in the health system including proper infrastructure, services of the employees, and so on.