Patient Experience Management
Driving improvement, keeping it simple
Cemplicity is determined that our work contributes directly to improvement in patients’ experiences and not simply the measurement of them.
Our focus is the technology that delivers surveys, captures feedback and then delivers insight widely across healthcare teams. When a patient requests contact or things go awry, we give teams the tools to take action and manage things through to resolution. Every programme we deliver has been supported by experts in survey design, strategic analysis and improvement consultancy. We are happy to recommend the best team and solution to meet your needs.
Power your patient experience programme with Cemplicity and step to the forefront of patient experience management practice.
A growing body of evidence signals the link between patient-centred care reported by patient experiences, and subsequent health benefits. Importantly, there is now a good understanding of the aspects of care that matter most to patients and therefore those things that should form the basis of patient experience monitoring.
An oft-referred to tragedy is the number of deaths at Stafford Hospital in England between 2005 and 2008 that were directly attributable to substandard care. The resulting investigation (the Francis Inquiry) highlighted one of the key breakdowns as “Statistics and reports were preferred to patient experience data, with a focus on systems, not outcomes;”
The investigation made a number of recommendations around patient feedback including, “Results and analysis of patient feedback including qualitative information, need to be made available to all stakeholders in as near “real-time” as possible, even if later adjustments have to be made. Patient feedback which is not in the form of a complaint but which suggests cause for concern, should be the subject of investigation and response of the same quality as a formal complaint, whether or not the informant has indicated a desire to have the matter dealt with as such. A proactive system for following up patients shortly after discharge would not only be good ‘customer service’, it would probably provide a wider range of responses and feedback on their care.”
In the aftermath of the Francis Inquiry, there emerged a focus on ‘putting patients at the centre of decision-making’. Subsequent health models across the world point to the Stafford Hospital tragedy as what can happen when health providers do not apply best practice patient experience measures. The approach Cemplicity takes to post-discharge patient experience measurement incorporates many of the valuable lessons from this investigation.
WALK THE TALK
All our clients have actively embraced the principles of patient-centred care. They don’t do this because it makes them feel good (although it does) but because this approach has been linked to improved health, financial, clinical, service and satisfaction outcomes.
Understanding what matters most to patients and incorporating this into day to day activities and strategic plans is a central plank of patient-centred care and this is exactly what we help our clients do. Unfortunately, despite the wide acceptance of these principles we still see many organisations presenting themselves as patient-centred, but without any systematic and embedded processes to ensure the patients’ priorities guide service design and decision-making.
Without undue complexity or theorising, Cemplicity introduces a simple, timely and powerful patient view across a hospital or health service so you can truly ‘walk the talk’.
Anecdotal feedback from our early clients is that our patient experience management approach is starting to have a real impact on reducing formal complaints. The key aspect of our approach is its timeliness – that we reach out and make it easy for patients to tell their story or ask for feedback before issues escalate or become critical. These clients report an early need to encourage staff to pick up the phone to just start a conversation with patients requesting contact and that this simple step was enough to clear the air.
Importantly, we remind people often that the vast majority of feedback delivered to staff through a Cemplicity programme, is positive. Patients are grateful for the chance to thank their carers and to explain all the reasons why clear communication they could understand and being treated with kindness and compassion have contributed to their wellbeing. But, when things do go wrong, the ability to quickly take action is key to avoiding future problems and risks.
There are many ways in which capturing and acting on patient feedback can save money.
The key drivers of a good patient experience always include factors related to good clear communication, confidence in the quality of care, coordination of care both in hospital and post discharge, and being treated with dignity, respect and kindness. It’s easy to accept the strong evidence that links overall good patient experience, built on these factors, with shorter lengths of stay in hospital, lower rates of healthcare related infections, better adherence to treatment regimes, lower readmission rates and ultimately, fewer deaths. All these outcomes have strong financial benefits and modelling these into a business case for a systematic patient experience management approach builds a persuasive case for investment.
Another benefit is the way in which patient feedback can be used to direct resources to fewer projects but those that will have the great impact on patients. Insight from our work will provide clear direction on those aspects of the patient journey that are most important to patients and offer the greatest room for improvement. By leading with the patients perspective you have an objective basis for resource allocation that can cut across traditional silos.
The link between good patient experiences and an engaged, positive workforce is short. Happier patients are proven to lead to greater staff satisfaction and retention although we admit it’s difficult to know which group has the stronger influence on the other! Our work impacts on staff culture in several ways.
Our action tools empower frontline teams to take ownership of the experiences of patients that they care for, allowing them to use timely patient feedback directly in team meetings and ward discussions. This approach is much more proactive than waiting for complaints or dry reports from ‘satisfaction research’ filtered down through Quality teams.
Importantly, the vast majority of feedback through our system is positive. By incorporating awards and positive acknowledgements, organisations can turn their focus to celebrating successes and emulating positive performance. We all know that building on strengths provides much greater traction than trying to correct weaknesses.
We also see an increasing interest in using the Cemplicity approach to monitor organisation values and culture internally, across health care teams. This ‘dual’ view across patients and staff is a valuable mechanism for bring culture alive and using this to optimise organisation performance.