• Patient Satisfaction

  • Does your medical practice have a robust patient satisfaction survey or does a staff member review the many doctor review sites that now are on the worldwide web? Vitals, RateMD or ZocDoc are just a few.

    In 2012, the federal government incorporated a shift in how hospitals were being paid for treating people who have Medicare. This program is a part of the pay-for-performance system that was built into the health care overhaul. A 27- question government survey administered to patients provides hospital with a scoring system, those that achieve a high score receive bonus payment.

    In addition, one of the Stage 2 of the Meaningful Use Incentive Program requirements are to get patients engaged and to achieve a minimum of 5 percent for patient engagement.  

    The Affordable Care Act has increased the use of patient satisfaction scores along with quality measures. Trends show that these patient satisfaction surveys are pushing into the private sector. Major insurers such as Aetna, Cigna, Humana and UnitedHealth Group, are contracting with accountable care organizations, patient-centered medical homes and other entities that tie physician pay to quality metrics of patient satisfaction surveys.

    How long do your patients wait in your waiting room? How satisfied are they with your prescription refilling system? Are your clinic bathrooms clean?  Is your front office trained to handle a disgruntled patient?

    These are all areas that are measured in the recent patient satisfaction surveys, that have nothing to do with patient healthcare or outcome, however; they are important to your patients.

    If you don’t have a patient satisfaction survey, you should incorporate one now. The survey should be meaningful with 4 or 5 questions, along with a comment section.

    Documenting your patients experience enable you to provide dialogue to your staff on improvements needed, accolades for a job well done, and if the case arises, demonstrate to a particular insurance payer your patient survey results. 

    Judith Lindsay, CEO of JAL Consult tackles all the elements of HIPAA compliance puzzle. Successfully assisting organizations to make sense of it all by implementing the correct policies and procedures that are reasonable and appropriate for their entity. Judith provides consulting, training and is available for speaking engagements. To read more about the world of compliance subscribed to JAL’s insightful newsletter at www.jalconsultantsaz.com OR follow JAL on Twitter @ judithconsult