Thursday, June 6, 2013

Part Two: HCAHPS -- What is this and where did it come from?

For this week's guest feature, Nancy English returns to provide information on the HCAHPS survey.  Welcome back, Nancy!

The Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS) survey is performed after patients have received inpatient care.  One might think that this would only impact hospitals when, actually, questions on the survey relate also to the physicians we credential and work with every day. 

There are 18 questions on the HCAHPS survey questionnaire that cover 8 areas relating to the patient’s healthcare experience:

1.    physician communication
2.    nursing communication
3.    cleanliness and quietness of facility
4.    management of pain
5.    communication about medications
6.    discharge information
7.    staff responsiveness 
8.    overall perception of the experience/facility

The survey also includes a question about the patient’s willingness to recommend that facility to others. 

I listed “physician communication” first for a reason.  Do you have physicians who do not seem to communicate well with patients….or anyone else?  We all probably have one or two whom we could name right off the top of our head.  How is that physician affecting your HCAHP scores?  What kind of rating would you give him/her if you were his/her patient?  In a true patient-centered environment, we would want to find out!

You may still wonder what this means to each of us as MSPs.  The answer ties directly to...yes, you may have already guessed...reimbursement.  Scores are calculated and compared to other facilities for percentile ranking.  Reimbursement from CMS is based upon the facility’s ranking.  As we move further into the unknown future of healthcare, it will be important for each of us to understand our role, whether great or small, in helping our facilities improve HCAHP scores.

More to come next time.  Learn more about HCAHP here.  

If you are interested in becoming a guest blogger, let us know!  We'd love to hear from you.

No comments: