How To Design Your Patient Satisfaction Survey Questions

Patient satisfaction in home healthcare means much more than just satisfaction because it reflects the quality of care being provided, and it affects patient retention and clinical results (Prakash, 2010).

Research indicates when patients report high satisfaction in hospitals, it helps to "generate a 50% higher financial performance than average providers” (Miller).

What to include in your patient satisfaction survey


When drafting a satisfaction survey for your patients, all the potential questions you can ask may seem overwhelming.

To begin, open-ended questions in surveys are crucial as it helps to provide a narrative and adds value to that particular question, other than a yes or a no. It may also help to encourage the participant to talk about their experience so far. Having 1 - 2 opened-ended questions are recommended for patient satisfaction surveys.

Updating patient survey questions is essential, as changes are constantly occurring. When surveys are anonymous, participants are more likely to answer them sincerely when they know that their identity is not revealed.

Survey questions need to be short, straight to the point, and easily understandable. Using direct questions will ensure that feedback is accurate and accomplishes the desired goal. Asking targeted questions allows providers to see exactly which part of their service is enjoyed and what parts may need improvements.


Key themes to include in your patient satisfaction survey are communication, care, staff, and experience.


Example questions (by themes)


The Home Health Care Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HHCAHPS) is a national standardized survey mailed to individuals who have received care from a home healthcare provider.


Below is a collection of sample questions from the 2020 HHCAHPS Survey.

Communication:

  • At the beginning of receiving home healthcare, did someone from your provider communicate with you on how to set up your home to allow for a safer mobilization/did someone from your provider communicate with you the medications you were taking?

  • How often did your home health providers notify you when they would arrive at your home in the last 2 months?

  • How often did your home health providers explain things that you were able to easily understand in the last 2 months?

Care:

  • Did a nurse from your home care agency provide care in the last 2 months?

  • Did you have any issues with the care provided in the last 2 months?

  • Did you talk about pain with your home health providers in the last 2 months?

  • Did the home health providers tell you when you have to take your medication in the last 2 months?

  • Did the home health providers tell you the potential side effects of the medication in the last 2 months?

Staff

  • How often did you feel respected by your home health providers in the last 2 months?

  • How often did your home health providers attentively listen to you in the last 2 months?

  • How often did your home health providers gently treat you in the last 2 months?

Experience:

  • Would you recommend this home care agency to your friends or family?

  • Rate the home care agency from 0 (worst) - 10 (best)?

Adding an option for commentary feedback is crucial. For instance, rate the home care agency from 0 - 10, can include a follow-up answer as to why the participant answered that specific number.


The importance of high patient satisfaction


When patients are satisfied and happy with the service, it leads to company success. According to the White House Office of Consumer Affairs, an unhappy customer will tell 9-15 people about their negative experience, whereas a happy customer will tell 4-6 people about their great experience (Alora health).


Word of mouth has a domino effect, where one person talks about a particular product/service to 2 of their friends, and those friends will tell the same to 2 of their friends (Whitler, 2014). Word of mouth influences the buying decisions of the consumer.

The research project, "Chatters Matters: The 2018 word-of-mouth Report” with 1001 Americans illustrates that “83% of Americans have made a word-of-mouth recommendation” (Fromm, 2018).

Additionally, “50%, of all Americans would choose word-of-mouth if they had to select one source of information to draw from when making decisions” (Fromm, 2018). Large purchases are influenced by word-of-mouth.


The value of patient satisfaction surveys


Patient satisfaction surveys can help you understand what to improve on, and it shows your employees that you care about offering the best quality care possible. Patient surveys help providers to gain insights into their patient's thoughts.


Challenges with surveys


Surveys are a great form of feedback, and the information gathered can help employers understand what problems need to be fixed in your company both externally and internally.


Patients may be afraid to speak up because of retaliation. Using a third-party service such as Retainify allows for more honest answers. A third-party service removes the tension of patients and staff members who might feel that responses directly to management could lead to unintended consequences. This tension is eliminated with third-party services, which will give the employer more honest feedback, saving them time and money by actively and efficiently addressing any issues in their organization.


One main issue with satisfaction surveys is they can take a long time to complete and sometimes feel redundant as some questions aren't relevant to the survey taker (patients). With Retainify's brief pulse surveys, the survey is shortened to a few relevant questions that do not seem cumbersome to complete and are pertinent to the patient’s circumstances. This aims to make patients more willing to take surveys and allows for a larger data set to base decisions off.


How can we help?


Retainify offers a unified solution that allows home care providers to both customize and automate their patient satisfaction and employee engagement surveys to measure what matters to them. Our cost-effective solution can be deployed in less than 24 hours with minimal effort, and customers can access feedback from their staff and patients in real-time. Turn Feedback into Action.


Questions or Feedback?

Contact Us: hello@retainify.com



Citations:

  1. Alora Home Health Software. (n.d.). Why Patient Satisfaction Scores Matter in Home Health. Retrieved October 04, 2021, from https://www.alorahealth.com/home-health-patient-satisfaction-score/

  2. Chalita, T. (2016, November 11). Why the negative word of mouth seems to be more popular than the positive? Retrieved October 04, 2021, from https://medium.com/@tongchalita/why-the-negative-word-of-mouth-gain-more-attention-than-the-positive-27118112d5e8

  3. Edelman, T. (2020, February 13). Changes Coming to CMS Websites for Consumers. Retrieved October 04, 2021, from https://medicareadvocacy.org/changes-coming-to-cms-websites-for-consumers/

  4. Evans, R., Berman, S., Burlingame, E., & Fishkin, S. (2020, March 16). It’s Time To Take Patient Experience Measurement And Reporting To A New Level: Next Steps For Modernizing And Democratizing National Patient Surveys. Retrieved October 04, 2021, from https://www.healthaffairs.org/do/10.1377/hblog20200309.359946/full/

  5. Fromm, J. (2018, November 07). How To Impact Your Brand By Word-Of-Mouth. Retrieved October 04, 2021, from https://www.forbes.com/sites/jefffromm/2018/11/07/how-to-impact-your-brand-by-word-of-mouth/?sh=68688c48f5f1

  6. Home Health Care CAHPS Survey. (2020). Home Health Care CAHPS Survey. Retrieved October 05, 2021, from https://homehealthcahps.org/Portals/0/SurveyMaterials/HHCAHPS_Questionnaire_English.pdf

  7. Johns Hopkins Medicine. (n.d.). Home Health Care Patient Experience. Retrieved October 05, 2021, from https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/patient_safety/patient_experience/hhcahps.html

  8. Miller, L. (n.d.). 3 Ways To Improve Patient Satisfaction In Your Hospital. Retrieved October 04, 2021, from https://viehealthcare.com/3-ways-to-improve-patient-satisfaction-in-your-hospital/

  9. Prakash, B. (2010). Patient Satisfaction. Retrieved October 05, 2021, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3047732/

  10. White, B. (1999, January). Measuring Patient Satisfaction: How to Do It and Why to Bother. Retrieved October 04, 2021, from https://www.aafp.org/fpm/1999/0100/p40.html

  11. Whitler, K. A. (2014, July 17). Why Word Of Mouth Marketing Is The Most Important Social Media. Retrieved October 06, 2021, from https://www.forbes.com/sites/kimberlywhitler/2014/07/17/why-word-of-mouth-marketing-is-the-most-important-social-media/?sh=287f999b54a8



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