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Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Ok, Not Just ONE Word. . .

A word about Press-Ganey Scores.

For those of you who don't know, these scores are how hospitals are rated, based on patient satisfaction with the facility, patient care, the nurses, physicians, and other staff.  You know what the problem with rating a hospital, especially Emergency Rooms, based on patient satisfaction is?

Patient satisfaction often has nothing to do with the quality of care that patient received!

Patient drives himself in with chronic back pain.  There is no acute injury to this patient.  Patient gets some Toradol (non-narcotic pain med), and get's discharged.  Patient, during stay, tries to go outside to smoke a cigarette.  Staff says no smoking on hospital grounds and that if he leaves, it's going to be AMA and he's going to have to start all over again.  Patient is pissed off that A) He didn't get narcotics [since, after all, he's really just a drug seeker], B) Nobody lets him outside to go smoke, and C) He had to wait a while because most of the nurses and doctors were in the middle of trying to bring somebody back to life (you know, as in a code)!
Patient, after receiving Press-Ganey survey, rates everything at the hospital as poor or very poor because he didn't get what he wants.  
Those of you who don't work in a hospital, and especially an ER, would be shocked to hear how often this happens.  Forget that this patient got some pain control (ERs are not obligated to treat chronic pain).  Forget that this guy was going to drive himself home after receiving narcotic.  Forget that the hospital is trying to promote health and wellness by not allowing smoking.  Forget that other patients at the hospital have asthma that can be set off by cigarette smell.  Forget the fact that somebody else was dying two rooms over.  What matters is that this guy wasn't allowed to contaminate his body with unnecessary narcotics and carcinogens, and that he had to wait a little longer than he would have liked.

So, now our scores go down.  People go to the other hospital down the road.  We lose money.  Wanna see how Press-Ganey scores negatively affect health care?  Read this article:
Press-Ganey Sucks
Also, here's a blog post from another ER blogger about the issue:
Customer Service 
Ok, I'm off my rant now. . .

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