Dr. Mark Neuman Discusses Value and Patient Satisfaction in Anesthesia

In an editorial published in the April 2011 issue of Anesthesiology, Mark D. Neuman, MD, discussed the importance of patient satisfaction and value in anesthesia care, remarking that an emphasis on patient perspective has centralized the use of patient-reported outcomes and measures of satisfaction.

Dr. Neuman said that while anesthesiologists have worked for at least 40 years to develop objective measures of patient satisfaction regarding anesthesia care, the lack of standardized methods for this assessment makes it difficult to establish how care could be improved. In the current issue of Anesthesiology, a team of researchers derived and validated a 30-item questionnaire to evaluate patient satisfaction with patient care in Taiwan. According to Dr. Neuman, the survey contributes to the field by presenting a scale specifically focused on the anesthesia care experience rather than perioperative care in general.

The survey also involved a rigorous process of pilot questionnaire development, in which detailed quantitative data from patient interviews was incorporated and refined. Despite the survey's strengths, however, Dr. Neuman says it offers no insight into the validity of the scale outside Taiwan, and researchers do not examine satisfaction among patients undergoing monitored anesthesia care or those receiving regional and general techniques in combination. A more succinct questionnaire may also be required to implement the survey in practice.

Dr. Neuman stresses the importance of developing a standardized tool to assess patient satisfaction and applauds the researchers for taking an important step in the development process.

Read the Anesthesiology editorial on patient satisfaction in anesthesia.

Read more on anesthesia:

-Study Suggests How to Improve Anesthesia Journal Clubs

-Ultrasound Guidance Improves Peripheral Nerve Block Success Rate

-Reducing Tidal Volume in Mechanically Ventilated Patients Could Improve Outcomes

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