If you ask a thousand US hospitals about their top priorities, nearly everyone would Patient Experience/Satisfaction at the head of the list. But surprisingly, upwards of half of those organizations do not have a formal mandate or mission to achieve that objective.
Those two data points come from a recently released and insightful survey by Catalyst Healthcare Research and the Beryl Institute State of Patient Experience in American Hospitals 2013. The bi-annual benchmarking study included 1,072 respondents from 672 unique organizations. It’s probably the largest study regarding Patient Experience, and frankly, it’s quite impressive.
Overall, the trends in Patient Experience in American Hospitals are generally ticking higher, based on comparison with the 2011 data, and responding hospital professionals feel “positive” (61%) or “very positive” (25%) about their progress to improve the Patient Experience.
That said, although a clear priority with most facilities (70%), more than half of the organizations (55%) do not have a formal definition. Priority or not, better than one in three (36%) have no formal mandate/mission, plus an additional 12 percent that responded “don’t know.”
Formal Mandates/Missions - Role Models
Let’s label those data points as a take-away opportunities for improvement. And fortunately for those facilities that need it, there are many good models available to help shape, or at least begin, a mandate. The survey provides these examples:
Patient Experience and Satisfaction--which seem to have emerged as an imperative only recently--are not at all new concepts. From solo practice to mega health system, we think there’s a valuable take-away in the creed of Cleveland Clinic founder Dr. William Lower...from 1921, over 90 years ago.
Drivers and Obstacles...
And where does the path to success begin? Not surprisingly, the benchmark survey says both drivers and obstacles start at the top of the food chain.
DIGGING DEEPER: On several occasions, we’ve talked with Dr. James Merlino, Chief Experience Officer at Cleveland Clinic where Patient Experience is Not Just About Patient Satisfaction. And click through here for the State of Patient Experience in American Hospitals 2013 report.