Patient Experience Management – The New Success Mantra - Firstsource Solutions - ContactCenterWorld.com Blog
The only thing that truly differentiates an organisation in this age of consumerism and high-tech products is the quality of customer experience it offers. This, by extension, is also applicable to the healthcare industry where the patient is the consumer. A premium patient experience is as important as clinical care as an indicator of customer satisfaction. According to the Patient Experience Journal, patient experience reflects the occurrences that happen independently or collectively across the continuum of care. It is focused on personalised care and customised services to meet patients’ needs and engage them as partners in healthcare.
Research has found that more than 65% of a patient’s interaction with a healthcare provider happens before and after the actual treatment. Given this, while the in-hospital experience like waiting time, registration assistance, nursing facilities and diagnosis are crucial to the patient experience, the choice of insurance coverage, access to the facility, ease of appointment, follow-up visit scheduling and call-back option for assistance are also core to the overall patient experience.
Many healthcare organisations have initiated the digital transformation process including real-time patient health monitoring, mobile apps for doctor appointments, billing and even providing a personalised diet chart based on the patient’s health condition. In the US, focus on patient experience is especially important as the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS) survey scores are directly tied to 30% of Medicare’s incentive payments to hospitals and health systems since October 2012.
And yet, a McKinsey report has found that while patient satisfaction is becoming an increasingly important source of competitive advantage in hospitals and health systems, many healthcare providers fail at measuring patient experience comprehensively. To counter this effectively, organisations must use the vast amounts of patient data available with them to make better decisions and enhance services. With the right analytics tools, hospitals and healthcare companies can collate and analyse data effectively and provide meaningful actionable insights. Analytics is being used extensively to track patient preferences and offer customised services.
A 2012 benchmarking study in Patient Experience Management (PEM) by Gelb Consulting found that leaders of several healthcare facilities agreed that improving patient experience supports growth in market share and patient volume. Exceptional experience can turn satisfied patients into advocates, which is a major benefit for an industry that thrives on referrals and recommendations. The study also found that a large majority of organisations were employing technology as a means to manage patient experience. Over 84% of the respondents said they relied on patients’ electronic records and 68% reported using real-time patient feedback tools. Technology was also being used extensively to track patient preferences.
But, the predominant and overarching principle for a successful PEM program is for it to be an enterprise priority, with support from each and every department of the healthcare organisation. Building and developing uniform and seamless service standards based on a culture of empathy is core to enhanced patient care and experience. Managing the patient experience will be a priority for progressive organisations and their PEM strategies will have to include technology and process excellence initiatives.
Publish Date: October 7, 2015 5:00 AM
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