5 Top Ways Providers Are Being Tracked for Patient Satisfaction

by Phil C. Solomon on January 27, 2013

in Consumerism and transparency

Patient Satisfaction Finally a Key Driver for Provider Actions. Business Volume and Compensation at Stake

This article by Bob Hayes, featured on the Business Broadway web site gives a rare glimpse into how healthcare transparency is going to affect providers in the future.

patient satisfactionThe U.S. government provides a variety of publicly available databases that include metrics on the performance of US hospitals, including patient experience (PX) database, health outcome database, process of care database and medical spending database. Applying Big Data principles on these disparate data sources, I integrated different metrics from their respective databases to better understand the quality of US hospitals and determine ways they can improve the patient experience and the overall healthcare delivery system. I spent the summer analyzing this data, and wrote many posts about it.

Why the Patient Experience (PX) has Become an Important Topic for U.S. Hospitals?

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will be using patient feedback about their care as part of their reimbursement plan for acute care hospitals (see Hospital Value-Based Purchasing (VBP) program). The purpose of the VBP program is to promote better clinical outcomes for patients and improve their experience of care during hospital stays. Not surprisingly, hospitals are focusing on improving the patient experience to ensure they receive the maximum of their incentive payments.

Key Findings from Analyses of Big Data of US Hospitals

Hospitals, like all big businesses, struggle with knowing “if you do this, then you will succeed with this.” While hospital administrators can rely on gut feelings, intuition and anecdotal evidence to guide their decisions on how to improve their hospitals, data-driven decision-making provides better, more reliable, insights about real things hospital administrators can do to improve their hospitals. While interpretation of my analyses of these Big Data are debatable, the data are what they are.

I have highlighted some key findings below (with accompanying blog posts) that provide value for different constituencies: 1) healthcare consumers can find the best hospitals, 2) healthcare providers can focus on areas that improve how they deliver healthcare, and 3) healthcare researchers can uncover deeper insights about factors that impact the patient insights, health outcomes and best practices.

  1. Healthcare Consumers Can Use Interactive Maps of US Hospital Ratings to Select the Best Provider. Healthcare consumers can use interactive maps to understand the quality of their hospitals with respect to three metrics: 1) Map of US hospitals on patient satisfaction, 2) Map of US hospitals on health outcomes, and 3) Map of US hospitals on process of care. Take a look at each to know how your hospital performs.
  2. Hospitals Can Use Patient Surveys to Improve Patient Loyalty. Hospitals might be focusing on the wrong areas to improve patient loyalty. While researchers found that hospitals’ top 3 priorities to improve the patient experience are focused on 1) reducing noise, 2) improving patient rounding and 3) the improving the discharge process and instructions, analysis of HCAHPS survey results show that hospitals will likely receive greater return on their improvement investment (ROI) if they focus on improving the patient experience along these dimensions: 1) pain management, 2) staff responsiveness and 3) staff explaining meds.

Read the rest of the article

patient satisfactionCheck out this follow up article which highlights the Top 10 blog posts focusing on Big Data, Patient Experience and Customer Metrics.

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