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Improving patient experience is a key aim for the NHS. Patient experience means putting the patient and their experience at the heart of quality improvement.

By asking, monitoring, and acting upon patient feedback, organisations are able to make improvements in the areas that patients say matter most to them.

Over the past few years, several documents and initiatives have highlighted the importance of the patient's experience and the need to focus on improving these experiences where possible. For example, Lord Darzi's report, high quality care for all (2008) highlighted the importance of the entire patient experience within the NHS, ensuring people are treated with compassion, dignity and respect within a clean, safe and well-managed environment.

In trying to create a NHS cultural shift' towards a truly patient-centred service, The NICE Quality Standard 15 (Quality standard for patient experience in adult NHS services ) has identified a number of generic patient experiences relevant to people who use adult NHS services in England and Wales.

1 Patients are treated with dignity, kindness, compassion, courtesy, respect, understanding and honesty.

2 Patients experience effective interactions with staff who have demonstrated competency in relevant communication skills.

3 Patients are introduced to all healthcare professionals involved in their care, and are made aware of the roles and responsibilities of the members of the healthcare team.

4 Patients have opportunities to discuss their health beliefs, concerns and preferences to inform their individualised care.

5 Patients are supported by healthcare professionals to understand relevant treatment options, including benefits, risks and potential consequences.

6 Patients are actively involved in shared decision making and supported by healthcare professionals to make fully informed choices about investigations, treatment and care that reflect what is important to them.

7 Patients are made aware that they have the right to choose, accept or decline treatment and these decisions are respected and supported.

8 Patients are made aware that they can ask for a second opinion.

9 Patients experience care that is tailored to their needs and personal preferences, taking into account their circumstances, their ability to access services and their coexisting conditions.

10 Patients have their physical and psychological needs regularly assessed and addressed, including nutrition, hydration, pain relief, personal hygiene and anxiety.

11 Patients experience continuity of care delivered, whenever possible, by the same healthcare professional or team throughout a single episode of care.

12 Patients experience coordinated care with clear and accurate information exchange between relevant health and social care professionals.

13 Patients' preferences for sharing information with their partner, family members and/or carers are established, respected and reviewed throughout their care.

14 Patients are made aware of who to contact, how to contact them and when to make contact about their ongoing healthcare needs.

Collecting Patient Experience Feedback

Trusts developing a patient experience programme should apply the Relevance, Time, Deployment approach in order to maximise response rates and achieve meaningful feedback data.

RELEVANCE: Are all questions in your survey relevant to the patient experience for the service you wish to obtain feedback for?

TIME:  The survey should be designed so that respondents can easily understand the questions, enabling them to answer each question quickly without a great deal of thought.  For general feedback, the questionnaire should be short in length enabling the user to complete within a couple of minutes.

DEPLOYMENT:  Recommendation 255 from the recent Francis Enquiry publication into Stafford Hospital, recommends the real time publication of patient experience data where possible.  With the development of technology, feedback data can be collected and reported in real time using touchscreens, tablets, mobile phones and online surveys.  These methods are inexpensive to deploy and ideal to collect continuous or large numbers of responses. 

However, paper-based and telephone surveys still have a very important place to play in the capture  of patient experience feedback.    

People may not have internet access and may not wish to complete the feedback in presence of the healthcare professional they have just met, in such cases, paper-based or telephone feedback is the most appropriate method. Additionally, telephone feedback is an excellent resource to ensure accuracy of the feedback, to obtain qualitative responses and to further explore respondent comments. 

Direct Data Analysis offer a full patient experience feedback service.  Please visit our website for further information, or contact us to discuss your requirements and obtain a free written quotation. 


 


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