It may seem like conversations around HCAHPS has become a broken record. The importance of these scores and other patient satisfaction results has not faded. Unfortunately, some hospitals don’t understand or acknowledge the impact these scores can have on their bottom line. This is yet another reason that hospitals need to think about what’s next. And what is next, is patients looking up hospitals and checking out reviews – just like they do now with restaurants, hotels, salons, car repair shops and mechanics, smart phones, and more.
Hospitals are well-positioned to think about and plan for this future today. Patients are reporting their experiences and the results are easily available on the Internet. Hospitals that have ignored the inevitable or are still waiting to see what was going to happen in the courts, now need to play catch-up in order to be competitive and sustain operations. This is especially important for hospitals in highly competitive markets. Continue reading
As 2013 quickly winds down to a close, aside from wondering where the time went, those of us working in healthcare can look at this year as one of significant changes — some that seemed surprising at the time. For me, there were some big “aha” moments in 2013 and I thought I would share several of them with you.
- I watched a debate among top ranking Republican and Democratic speakers on the Affordable Care Act. The entire discussion was around the tactics of the roll out, much like the coverage on major news networks. The big “Aha” moment for me was at the same meeting when the CEO of a major IDN was answering questions about clinicians’ acceptance of the major — read unprecedented — changes he was making in operations around efficiency and rationalization. His response was the following: “At first the reaction was that this would go away. Then the Supreme Court reaffirmed it, multiple votes to repeal it were unsuccessful and Obama was re-elected. Our people now believe it is here to stay and we have to change.” Continue reading
This is a time of great change and challenge for hospitals and clinicians. When major change happens in industries, particularly industries like healthcare that have been stable for many years, each day, week, and month can leave you feeling claustrophobic as the restrictions, the budgets, and the rules get tighter leaving you less and less room to maneuver.
It can be difficult to understand what to do to break into the clear and start to operate in a different mode.
Patient engagement is one path leading to the clear. How to make it happen and what to use to facilitate patient engagement can be daunting questions to address while undergoing major shifts. It can be easy, and tempting, to ignore it and work on other programs. But getting the patient and the patient’s family on the side of the healthcare provider—getting their attention and help—leverages a whole new set of players to get and keep patients healthy. Continue reading
There has been a lot of talk about mobile devices, such as iPads and other tablets, as a tool to help increase productivity and enhance the patient experience. The idea is that with tablets, clinicians and physicians can have instant access to electronic health records and other necessary information to make the best use of time spent with patients. Some hospitals are considering using tablets as a part of the workflow to enter information into EMRs, or document and deliver patient education. And some hospitals have considered offering tablets to patients for personal use while in waiting rooms or during their stay. Continue reading
The move to increase rounding at hospitals is a trend in the right direction. More direct nurse time with the patient and family is helpful in healing and education. It can also be a great patient satisfier. It is important though that nurse-patient time is quality time. This generally means three things:
- The nurse has sufficient time to spend in the patient room answering questions and really interacting in a personal manner. In order for this to occur, nurses must be free from repetitive low value-add tasks to spend more meaningful time in the patient room.
- The nurse can be forewarned of patient issues and should come prepared to address them in a well thought out manner. This means that they should have access to patient information and concerns that will enable them to make the time they have with each patient of the highest value. This isn’t necessarily EHR records or medical information. This is more patient questions about what is going on in the hospital and about their concerns.
- The nurse is not overwhelmed with schedule-driven, low-quality “touching base” interactions. Think of the repetitive “Goodbye” you get from the flight attendant when leaving a plane. That is impersonal, repetitive and low quality. Continue reading
By: Tom Klopack, CEO
Several months ago I commented on three of the ten issues called out by PwC’s “Health Research Institute the Top Ten Health Industry Issues to Watch in 2013”. The three issues called out in January’s blog were:
6. Goodbye Cost Reduction, Hello Transformation
7. Customer Ratings Hit the Pocketbooks of Healthcare Companies
10. The Building Blocks of Population Health Management
Now that we are half way through 2013 I wanted to provide a quick update on what we see on these same three important issues being addressed, more or less aggressively, by health care providers. Continue reading
The basic axiom of Continuous Quality Improvement is that you can’t improve what you can’t measure. And measurement must be at a level to support individual accountability. How does that apply to improving HCAHPS scores at a hospital? It means collecting enough patient responses on a monthly basis down to the individual nursing unit level to provide actionable data. Now without getting into statistical minutia, the statisticians will tell you that in order to be reasonably confident that the scores you obtain from a sample of patients accurately reflect the scores of the entire population of patients you are tracking, you should have responses from a minimum of 30 patients (commonly referred to as “minimum n”). Continue reading
Skylight is pleased to welcome the newest member of our executive team, Lisa Romano. Lisa officially joined Skylight on Monday, April 22. As chief clinical officer she will help guide our product development efforts and work closely with our clients to ensure effective patient engagement and quality care across the continuum. Continue reading
There’s a story of a traveler walking down a picturesque road in Ireland looking for the village of his grandparents. With few road signs he was a bit confused and walked up to an old farmer sitting on a stone wall and asked him for directions to the village. The farmer, in a thick brogue said “Walk down this lane for about two miles, and go up a hill and around a bend. You’ll see a sign for Paddy’s Bar. When you get there you can have a pint, and you’ll have gone half a mile past the left turn that takes you to your destination.” Continue reading
Recently, an interesting article was published on trends in healthcare: “PwC’s Health Research Institute Identifies the Top Ten Health Industry Issues to Watch in 2013”. The top ten list was assembled based on PwC’s Health Research Institute (HRI) and the collective input of PwC’s professionals who work with hospitals, physician groups, pharma and medical device companies and employers. They also polled 1,000 US consumers on a range of healthcare topics covered in the report. Continue reading