What makes a patient experience a good experience? That's the question hospital executives face when attempting to define the issue.
In a recent study of more than 790 hospitals, conducted by The Beryl Institute, patient experience was a high priority, ranked second behind quality/patient safety. While recognizing its importance, most hospital executives (73 percent) admit they do not have a formal definition. The Beryl Institute offered its own definition: “the sum of all interactions, shaped by an organization’s culture, that influence patient perceptions across the continuum of care.”
Research from the study shows hospitals most often engage in three different tactics for improving the patient experience:
- The reduction of hospital noise
- An efficient discharge process and instructions
- Effective patient rounding
Most of the hospital executives (61 percent) felt they were making progress with the strategy, however; 50 percent identified the hospital culture as one of the biggest challenges to change.
In anesthesia, patient experience translates into minimizing the incidence of post-operative nausea and vomiting (PONV) and pain and effective pre- and post-operative communication and instructions.
Healthcare reform puts a renewed focus on the issue with initiatives like the Center for Medicare and Medicaid's Hospital Value-Based Purchasing Program that measures results from information obtained from the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS) surveys.