Focus on Communication for Improved HCAHPS Scores

Becker’s Hospital Review recently featured an article on "4 Strategies to Boost Hospitals’ HCAHPS Scores." The tips in short were:

  1. Communicate clearly and often.
  2. Collect and act on data.
  3. Educate patients.
  4. Make a positive patient experience part of the culture.

To reinforce points 1 and 3, FierceHealthIT reports that researchers publishing a study in BMC Medical Informatics and Decision Making concluded online dialogue between healthcare providers and patients can help to educate patients and make them more satisfied.

Denmark researchers used an online communication tool where the patients would write messages to their providers, and were promised a response within 24 hours. Patients "indicated that the tool gave them a sense of freedom and a ‘feeling of security,’ knowing they could get their providers’ attention as necessary, while not being tied down to any particular time or place to meet."

Answer this week’s poll: Have you used an online medical portal to view lab results or email your doctor before?

For item #4, check out this article from HealthLeaders Media on "How a Big-Time Hospital Creates a Small-Town Patient Experience." The Chief Experience Officer at NYU Langone shares how her patient experience team and medical staff "discuss strengths and opportunities regarding courtesy, respect, listening, and explanation of the patient’s condition in a language they can understand."

A guided treatment plan with online access like those found in the Patient Guidance System can help on all these points of HCAHPS improvement. The online patient tool helps with convenient communications, thorough education in a language patients can understand, and an easy way to collect and act on feedback data. Read about how it can help with orthopedic programs.

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