5 ways ASCs can boost patient satisfaction scores

Poor patient satisfaction scores hurt an ASC's reputation and reimbursement, according to Medical Transcription Services.

Here are five strategies to improve patient satisfaction scores:

1. Optimize the presurgery process. With many staff members and physicians involved in the pre-surgery process, it's important to ensure coordination to and efficiency. Link all areas related to patient information and discussion to the scheduling process, and complete pre-admission testing and clearances well in advance of surgery. Remind patients of their financial responsibilities and set payment expectations. Inform the patient about what they should do to prepare for the operation, such as arranging transportation.

2. Ease day of surgery experience. Patient anxiety is highest the day of operation, so alleviate stress by providing clear instructions, making an escort available and carrying out procedures in a smooth sequence. Another way to calm patients' nerves is playing relaxing music.

3. Engage the patient's family. It's vital to establish effective communication with the patient's family because they play an important role in the patient's experience. Consider keeping nervous family members updated by linking an OR feed to an iPad in the waiting room.

4. Facilitate a smooth post-surgical experience. Explain to patients the details of the procedure, what they should expect and when to anticipate a follow-up visit or call. Observe the patient's symptoms and pain level, and inform the surgeon if any intervention is necessary. Answer any billing questions and go over payment details again.

5. Ensure a smooth and timely discharge. Put an experienced nurse with great communication skills in charge of a standardized discharge process. The nurse navigator should help patients understand postoperative instructions. A hospital in Kansas City, Mo., gives pediatric patients bear-shaped backpacks upon discharge to add to the experience.

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