Independent Emergency Physicians

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The Value of Patient Experience
Hospitals with better patient-reported experience perform better financially

By David Hall, MD, FACEP, Chief Operating Officer and President-Elect

A recent study by The Deloitte Center for Health Solutions found that improving the patient experience can help a hospital improve its financial performance by strengthening customer loyalty, building reputation and brand, and boosting utilization of hospital services through increased referrals to family and friends. Furthermore, research has shown that better patient experience correlates with lower medical malpractice risk for physicians and lower staff turnover ratios.

Patient and Financial Link

Because of the patient and payment factors, one might expect that hospitals with better patient experience scores might perform better financially – but the relationship has not been well studied.  Deloitte research validated the relationship between patient experience and financial performance and its analysis pointed to two main findings:

  • Hospitals with high patient-reported experience scores have higher profitability. 

  • The association of patient experience with financial performance is large, even after controlling for other hospital characteristics that can drive hospital performance. 

With multiple priorities and resource demands, we may all be questioning the business value of collecting, analyzing, and acting upon patient experience data.  However, these results suggest that good patient experience is associated with higher hospital profitability, and that this association is strongest for aspects of patient experience most closely associated with better care (in particular, provider-engagement).

IEP's Patient Experience Focus

IEP has a renewed focus on improving patient experience and a renewed commitment to supporting all of our providers with the resources and tools to help them succeed.  Patient experience is about the overall perception and emotional connection patients feel to their provider and hospital.  It is what creates loyalty and turns patients into customers and customers into champions who will recommend the hospital to family and friends.  

 

Our Patient Experience team, led by Tushar Patel, has been working on a variety of initiatives to help us all become more engaged providers and better contributors to a great patient experience.  These initiatives include:

  • Creation of patient experience lanyard cards.

  • Thom Mayer, Medical Director of the NFL Players Association and one of the most widely-sought speakers on healthcare patient experience, leadership and management will be speaking to our group this fall.  

  • Dr. Kim and Henry Ford Allegiance are successfully piloting real time surveys to our patients cell phones 

  • Our team at Providence is working collaboratively to address our patients "anxiety score" in efforts to actively address the patients true reason for their visit. 

  • We have also asked Susan Durgan, our Director of Marketing, to work with the Patient Experience Committee to spearhead the creation of a company-wide patient experience plan.  The plan will help support providers with resources, tools and training, as well as unify all existing patient experience activities company-wide to create best practices.

We know that hospitals are still making investments in the tools and technologies necessary to better engage patients and enhance patient experience.  IEP is making those investments too.  It's another example of our Shared Risk, Shared Reward partnership with our hospital partners.  And it drives our success and the success of our partners.

Download the full Deloitte Report here