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I met with a colleague last month with whom I'm partnering to create a system that can help organizations monitor and respond to patient and family concerns, questions and compliments in real time using their own devices.
Who wouldn't want that in their organization? Get on top of situations. Promote positive word of mouth. Set up the organization for better HCAHPS responses.
Turns out some organizations want to run the other way.
The platform allows organizations to get data in real time. And with that comes responsibility. The organization must act on it and align their processes and workflows to become a responsive organization. Not every organization is ready to or willing to do this.
For those readers following the black cloud over our family's head this year, you know that my wife's brother and then my sister passed away less than a month apart earlier this year. On Aug. 23, so did my father-in-law, Lou. He was hospitalized July 3 and never made it home. While 51 days of his hospital experience were miserable, the last day of his life was peaceful and dignified.
His last day was spent in hospice, administered in the hospital through a separate company not affiliated with the hospital. The culture difference was glaring. And hospice workers were truly caring.
First, they respected the family's wishes. I married into a large Irish family and there were probably 20 of us around his bed as they withdrew support. Even a cousin from Northern Ireland, a priest, came over and administered last rites. Crowd control was not an issue. The hospice nurse simply let us have our space while she explained necessary information in a respectful manner.
Earlier this year I attended a World Health Care Congress session on employee health. The head of Comcast's human resources spoke. He offered a different perspective on addressing employees' health.
Comcast focuses less on specific programs to promote employee wellness (benefits, wellness centers) and more on the underlying triggers that cause bad health to manifest.
He cited something I hadn't heard of before. It was Eliza Corporation's Engagement Index. This tool examines life context issues while predicting how those issues impact health, spending and satisfaction--ultimately expanding the definition of health.
I was in theDistrict of Columbia in April, and at a meeting the idle chitchat turned to a lively conversation about Uber. Ever heard of it? I hadn't.
Uber, through the Uber App, seamlessly connects riders to drivers. At its basic level, it is a cross between taxi and car service. Founded in 2009, it is in 70 cities today. And taxi companies are not too happy.
See, Uber takes the yucky out of the taxi experience and then enhances that experience with the mobile app. I was in New York City for my birthday. Having downloaded the app, I said to my wife, "Let's try this." All I can say is, "Wow."
"The real measures have to come from the heart not ROI."
That is the message that Cleveland Clinic President and CEO Toby Cosgrove, M.D., shared as he opened the Cleveland Clinic's 2014 Patient Experience Empathy and Innovation Summit on May 19. Despite all the metrics that have descended upon providers and the carrots and sticks that sometime spur interest in patient experience, it really comes down to measures from the heart or doing the right thing.
When I speak at various conferences and hospital leadership events, I dummy down my message about patient experience--simply, we over-complicate it. We need to step back, catch our breath and use common sense. Here are some nonhealthcare examples:
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