Why Patient Satisfaction Matters
A rush of emotion floods someone when they’re strapped into an ambulance. Uneasy feelings are natural as the sirens flicker on and you are sped off to a destination you certainly didn’t plan on traveling to earlier in the day.
In dealing with an emergency, you don’t want to experience any additional pain points as you’re already imposed with traumatic circumstances. At Mobile Medical Response, we don’t view our job as delivering a patient from point A to point B, but also creating an atmosphere capable of preventing any unnecessary qualms. This is why we actively measure and assess patient satisfaction.
Since 2007, we’ve invested in patient satisfaction surveys – and we are currently one of 65 full-service ambulance transportation companies in the nation assessing satisfaction rates. Through the 24-question survey, the patient offers their feedback on everything from the dispatch call, to the ambulance ride, the medic’s care, and even billing. The survey highlights a myriad of topics within those areas such as timeliness, comfort, skill of medics, care, and more.
To continue to receive exceptional marks, we are proactive in delivering stellar service in a reassuring atmosphere. For us, it starts with cleanliness. We take great pride in providing a clean ambulance – outside and in – for each service. As a patient experiencing a dire swirl of emotions, a less than tidy environment is disconcerting and adds further doubts of quality care. The “don’t judge a book by its cover” adage doesn’t apply here – exceptional patient satisfaction starts with cleanliness.
Clear and attentive communication also helps set the scene for high patient satisfaction. For someone experiencing an emergency, they are descended upon by strangers; often without full comprehension of what is happening to them. Our crew knows the importance of open communication. They make sure to let the patient know what is happening and include them and/or their family in the decision-making process. This is the human touch and experience that is so crucial in an emergency. For example, imagine a mother with a sick child. There’s a hefty amount of trust in this scenario, so we make sure we are calming fears and letting her know what’s occurring.
In the survey, each topic is scored out of 100. We strive to make sure our performance cumulatively scores in the 90 to 92 range. Currently, we are meeting that standard with a score of 91.47. Our highest individual topic scores include: cleanliness of the ambulance (93.85), care shown by the medic (93.41), degree to which the medics took your problem seriously (93.50), skill of the medic (93.55) and extent to which medics cared for you as a person (93.34).
While we are pleased with our scores, we remain dedicated to improving upon them – especially in the areas where scores are lower (often due to the minimal time we get to spend with a patient). This includes topics like pain relief.
Currently, we upload data from the surveys once a month (though we are hoping to move it to twice a month soon). We also share with the staff the results on a monthly basis and highlight opportunities for improvement. We’ll review the data and the circumstances to see what happened and will have the necessary coaching with a staffer if need be.
Healthcare is an industry moving from volume-based work to quality-based, so providing the best patient experience is imperative for us. To be the choice provider in the communities we serve, we need to establish the essential environment that renders high patient satisfaction scores. This is what sets us apart from our peers.