Every institution has a desire to serve its clients better. Believe it or not, whether you are in a supermarket or a hospital, the staff there are not employed to give you a hard time. They are employed to serve you. People misunderstand this. That is why when they receive a patient survey questionnaire, they get all upset.
Next time that happens, take a deep breath, smile, and graciously fill it.
What is a Patient Survey Questionnaire?
I’ll tell you what it’s not. A patient survey is not a rating of the health institution you are in. many people wrongly think survey questions contribute to the rating of the institution leading to more funding. That’s not true. Even if it were, it would still be good to cooperate, after all, it is that funding that helps you to get affordable treatment.
Now let me tell you what a patient survey questionnaire is.
A patient survey questionnaire is an instrument that is used by healthcare providers to gather information from you so as to serve you better next time.
What is the Purpose of a Patient Survey?
Believe it or not, there is a point and a purpose to those questions you try to avoid. They are not just a waste of time, resources, and energy. Depending on the information required in the survey, the purposes of the survey may be one or more of the following.
1. To Get to Know You Better
Yes, your healthcare facility wants to get to know you more. Your health care provider needs to know your lifestyle, habits, frequency of hospital visits, and even your degree of satisfaction with your health insurance, among many other things. All this is to help them understand you more and know best to serve you. And you thought they were just being nosey. Examples of survey questions they make ask in this regard are:
- Do you smoke?
- How often do you exercise
- Is there a history of type 2 diabetes in your family?
2. To Help the Health Care Facility Improve Their Standards
No one likes waiting in line. Especially at the emergency room. This where survey questions come in. They help healthcare institutions discover client pain points and work on improving them.
3. It Serves as a Bridge Between Your Health Care Provider and You
Usually, when you visit a hospital, there’s no time for chit-chat. Yet the hospital needs to get certain information from you. This is where the survey comes to the rescue as a bridge to connect you to your healthcare provider. There are questions a health care provider or agency may need to ask a patient, but due to the inappropriate timing (imagine answering questions with a massive splinter sticking out of your foot), they resort to sending you some survey questions to answer in the comfort of your own home.
4. Helps the Health Care Provider Meet Compliance Requirements
Organizations like the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and HCAHPS require healthcare service providers to regularly take surveys in its programs of quality improvement. These surveys also help to ensure that regulations are being enforced.
Benefits of Participating in a Patient Survey
You’re probably accustomed to getting surveys from other service providers like restaurants, your local gym, and so forth. What you may not know is that some of them may not even read your responses. But with the patient survey questionnaire, it’s different. Every response is read. Why? Your life is important.
Now that I’ve (hopefully) encouraged you to participate in the next patient satisfaction survey, here are a few benefits you will reap.
1. Improved Service and Facilities
Your responses are taken seriously by “the powers that be” and are actually acted upon. Every facility wants to provide the best service and it is your response that enables them to do so.
2. Informed Decisions When Choosing a Health Care Facility
Even though your personal details are kept confidential, the results of the survey are published publicly. This helps you see which health care facility is more efficient and reliable, thus informing your decision the next time you need to go for treatment.
3. Rogue Elements are Removed Out of the System
Let’s face it, healthcare professionals can sometimes (in rare cases) behave unprofessionally. Sometimes you may not be bold enough to confront senior management about it, but a survey gives you the perfect opportunity to voice your concerns. This helps the healthcare system identify such elements and remove them, making the hospitals a better place.
Fish that survey Out of the Trash!
Perhaps you discarded the latest survey into the trash can, deeming it an unnecessary waste of your time. Now that you know the power of a patient survey questionnaire, go and fish it out, fill it in as best as you can, and send it back.
Here’s to your perfect health.