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AutoData Systems > Patient Care

Ten No-cost Ways to Improve Patient Satisfaction

Our goal in writing this blog is to provide you, the reader, with valuable insight (at least we hope its valuable). Most of the time, we offer our own perspectives on relevant issues. But sometimes, others offer great advice that we would be remiss not to share with you. This is one of those times.

The blog over at www.physicianspracitce.com has an insightful recent post outlining “Ten no-cost ways to improve patient satisfaction.” The post reiterates the importance of measuring patient satisfaction, but goes on to give 10 simple –yet effective – tips on how physicians can improve patient satisfaction. Check out the full post at the below link!

 

http://www.physicianspractice.com/blog/ten-no-cost-ways-to-improve-patient-satisfaction

Using surveys at assisted living facilities to increase quality of care

There are currently 735,000 men and women residing in assisted living housing in America.[1] Over the next 20 years, as baby boomers continue to age and leave the workforce in droves, the number of assisted living residents will spike. Recent questions surrounding patient safety and the quality of care administered at these facilities have been raised in the media, most recently highlighted by an investigative series done by PBS’s Frontline.

A large concern surrounding the problem of patient safety at these facilities is “[t]oo often, families don’t have the information they need to protect their loved ones residing in assisted living facilities,”[2] says National Association of Professional Geriatric Care Managers’ President, Julie Gray.  One of the best ways for facilities to get that information into the hands of those families is through measuring their own quality of care and resident satisfaction. The best way to measure care and patient satisfaction is by surveying residents, employees, and families.

Pioneer Network – a non-profit organization which advocates for positive change in eldercare – released a helpful guide outlining what families should look for when searching for the right assisted living facility.[3] The guide is not only extremely helpful to families looking for the right facility, but it is also helpful for the facilities themselves. It serves as a reminder of the importance of constantly evaluating the care an assisted living facility provides. The guide suggests families ask specific questions about “person-directed care and what the assisted living community is doing, if anything, with person-directed care.” The guide lists specific questions to ask: how do you welcome a new resident?; do you measure resident satisfaction each year?; do you provide training for your staff on how to provide person-directed care?; etc. As obvious as it may seem, care facilities should be asking themselves the same questions about the care they provide. Further, the guide suggests that facilities survey family members of the individual residing at the facility.

Assisted living facilities will increase their quality of care and patient satisfaction by asking their residents, employees, families, and themselves, the right questions. The best way to ask and answer the important and specific questions put forth above is through custom tailored surveys. Facilities are in the best position to know which questions to ask. When facilities have the ability to custom tailor their own surveys to ask those specific questions and to freely edit those surveys, they put themselves in a position to gather more accurate and valuable data.

Feel free to contact AutoData to find out how we can help assisted living facilities create custom tailored paper and web surveys to  improve your care, and most importantly, improve the overall quality of life for your residents.



[1] “New Survey from National Association of Professional Geriatric Care Managers Offers a Roadmap to Protect Growing Number of Seniors http://www.prweb.com/releases/2013/9/prweb11083496.htm

[2] See id.

Scannable Office cited by study as being “significantly” quicker than manually entering patient data

Public Health Ontario (PHO) recently released a study in which they used Scannable Office® for incorporating scannable forms into their immunization data collection processes. Like many healthcare organizations, PHO realized that “[p]opulating individual-level records through manual data entry is time-consuming. An alternative is to use scannable forms, completed at the point of vaccination and subsequently scanned and exported to a database or registry.”

PHO selected AutoData® Scannable Office as “the most appropriate software for this feasibility study.”

PHO’s study noted how the majority of clients commented on the ease of the entire process, “[q]uestionnaires were completed by 198 clients at HRHD clinics . . . [m]ost clients reported that instructions were clear (81%), the experience of writing letters/numbers in individual boxes was the same or easier than other forms (88%), completing this type of form took the same amount of time or less than other types of forms (87%), and there were no parts of the form that they found confusing (84%).” Further, “[s]ome clients noted that these forms contained more space than others, and that the allocation of one box per character made the form easier to complete.”

PHO found that “[p]ersonnel in both organizations used the scanning application successfully to capture high quality immunization data,” and that the “time required to scan and verify forms at (HRHD) was significantly shorter than manual data entry.”

Finally, PHO observed that “scanning is associated with shorter data processing times, which, when considered in the context of hundreds or thousands of vaccinees, means that fewer resources are required to compile these high quality datasets.”

Find the Full report here: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3525595/

The New Importance of Measuring Patient Care

Another day, another article on the importance of measuring patient care in a post-Affordable Care Act world (It pays for hospitals to keep patients happy, Seattle Times, see link below).

As discussed in our last post, federal reimbursements are being tied not only to surveys that measure a patient’s care, but also their experience. In an attempt to improve the patient’s experience, everything from a patient’s overall care to hospital noise and cleanliness are measured. The better the patient’s experience, the more money is received in reimbursements, or so the logic goes.

But measuring specific aspects of patient care is easier said than done. For example, perhaps your hospital implements – or contracts someone to implement – your HCAHPS surveys. Or perhaps the same goes for your AHRQ Medical Office Survey. Or perhaps the same goes for any other myriad of standardized surveys your hospital might use. While administering all of those different surveys is important, there are two inherent problems: 1) too many moving parts when trying to implement multiple different surveys all collecting different kinds of data 2) the standardized surveys don’t necessarily cover all of the topics you wish to measure (i.e. hospital noise and cleanliness).

The severity of the first problem depends on the hospital’s processes. If you’re reading this, you’re likely well aware of the issues that arise in administering multiple standardized surveys. For example, dealing with third party contractors who write, administer, and report on different surveys creates red tape and removes the care provider further away from the process of measuring care. Also, the data collected from all these different surveys is unorganized, hard to manage, and doesn’t flow.

Second, the standardized surveys don’t allow you the flexibility to ask the questions you want to ask. As the Seattle Times article suggests, hospitals need the ability to measure all sorts of different patient attitudes and experiences; how the hospital communicates to the patient, how the hospital serves the patient, how they address the patient’s pain, and so on.

Because of these two problems, standardized surveys and the third party vendors who administer them can’t touch on the important level of detail needed to ask the right questions. The measurement of care should be administered by those closest to the patients, the ones providing the care.

So what am I getting at?

The ability to custom tailor surveys so that every detail about a patient’s experience is measured. The flexibility and autonomy necessary to create surveys that ask the questions your organization wants to ask. The ability to have all of your data in one spot. This is what AutoData does for its customers. AutoData’s software gives you the in-house tools to be in full control of your surveys and your data, giving you the ability to better measure your care and improve your care.

Please contact us for more information on how we can help.

 

(Seattle Times article below)

http://seattletimes.com/html/nationworld/2021593747_healthpatientsxml.html