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The increasing importance of the patient online survey

Posted on 5/31/2013 by Elizabeth in category: survey software articles
Countless other industries have historically paid attention to customer satisfaction for years. However, in the area of healthcare, patient satisfaction hasn't been given as high of a priority due to a number of factors, including a high doctor-to-patient ratio. However, today, with increased competition among medical practices, patient's becoming their own healthcare advocates, and patients footing more of the bill of their healthcare costs, that thinking is prehistoric.

Today, listening to a patient's' concerns, views, and suggestions for improvement through patient surveys is essential to any patient-centered health practice. The truth is, patient satisfaction surveys designed through online survey software are a valuable survey tool for identifying ways of improving your medical practice, whether its a dental practice, eye care clinic, or general healthcare practice. 

"Unless a physician is not interested at all in information, a patient satisfaction survey can be useful," says John Rollet, MD, an Illinois family physician to the American Academy of Family Physicians. In addition, "it shows your staff and the community that you're interested in quality. It demonstrates that you are looking for ways to improve," Rollet said.

Medical practitioners can use patient surveys results to make priority improvements in patient care, both in terms of providing quality health care and treating patients with respect and genuine concern. Bedside manner, after all, is just as important in the doctor's office as it is next to the hospital bed.

While patient surveys can help improve the ratings of a medical practice over time, more importantly it can translate to better patient care and healthier patient outcomes. By conducting ongoing surveys, medical practice administrators can track improvement over time. In other words, a patient survey is a snapshot of how your patients view your practice at this point in time. Take the patient feedback and device plans for improvement projects around the comments, complaints, and suggestions for enhancements.

While you don't have to act on every patient suggestion for improvement they have given you through your online survey software, you should consider taking action on the key areas that are causing your patients dissatisfaction.

Keep in mind, that chances are when you administer a patient satisfaction survey you are going to get a lot of comments telling you what you are doing right in addition to your areas that need improvement. For that reason, make sure you celebrate these positive reinforcements while working on your areas of weakness.

If you have decided that a patient satisfaction survey is needed in your practice, but find that you need assistance, a survey software company can handle the entire survey process, from design to implementation to data analysis.

That said, a patient surveys should be a brief, easily administered survey tool that provides medical facilities with valuable insight and information from the patient on the comprehensive services the practice provides. As in other areas of healthcare, the patient’s anonymity and identity should be protected.

What's the bottom line? A well-designed patient surveys can improve your medical practice and help you to deliver better care to your patients. And, in the entire scheme of things, the latter is really what is most important.

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