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Key Strategies: Improving the patient experience while trimming costs

Key Strategies: Improving the patient experience while trimming costs

The transformation to value-based care for healthcare systems has been underway for quite a few years now, hence the heavy focus on the improving the patient experience as it can have a major effect on a hospital’s bottom line. We’ve seen healthcare executives propose and implement a variety of patient-centered strategies from adding services, redesigning facilities and training their staff to be more compassionate. With there being endless approaches, how can healthcare systems hone in on a select few that would truly improve the patient experience while not ramping up their costs?

The American Society for Quality (AQS), an organization that offers certification on varied quality metrics, polled 256 of its members working in the healthcare industry, asking them to rank their top priorities for improving the patient experience while reducing costs. Here are the results of AQS’s survey, ranked from least to most popular strategies:

•    21% said organizations should prioritize non-traditional care delivery and amenities, including concierge care, on-demand services, healing gardens and aesthetic services.
•    36% think investments should be made on interactive technology that enables patients to become more involved in their own level of care, including smartphones, text messaging, social networking, web portals and email.
•    56% of respondents said organizations need ease of access to treatment across the entire continuum of care, through accountable care organizations or other models.
•    61% said providers need a staff work-flow that allows for frequent face-to-face engagement with patients.
•    71% of respondents said organizations should view improvement in quality of patient experience and service delivery as being of equal priority to financial and clinical performance measures.
•    77% said organizations should invest in experienced, socially skilled and engaged staff, which includes administration, physicians, and support staff.
•    81% pointed to strong leaders who prioritize a patient-centered philosophy among all staff and promote an organized system where patients know what to expect.
•    83% chose improved communications between patients and caregivers.

Was there a specific strategy left off that has proven successful for your healthcare system? Let us know!




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