The Patient Satisfaction survey has become an essential tool for healthcare organizations. With an engaging survey, your organization has the opportunity to collect feedback that reveals not only areas where service may be flat, but which aspects of care are considered most important and valuable to patients.
Ease of use, key questions, and follow-up are just three of the top tips for the most effective Patient Satisfaction survey.
1. Digital Data Collection Tops Paper Surveys
Today, more people opt for paperless communication, whether it’s the monthly power bill or e-invites to a party. Paper has become cumbersome, generating unnecessary physical waste. Digital communications and outreach like the Patient Satisfaction survey offer less hassle plus an eco-friendly alternative to excessive paper usage.
Patients appreciate, and have come to expect, user-friendly digital services. From appointment scheduling to checking test results online via a secure portal, patients are more likely to complete a survey if it’s offered digitally. A mobile survey has multiple benefits, for both the healthcare organization and the patient.
A patient is more likely to complete a survey on an iPad than filling out paper. You can use an offline survey and give your patients an ideal way to express their opinions quickly and easily without worrying about the Wifi. —exactly what an organization needs to improve service.
2. Key Questions and Power of the Open-Ended Question
An effective Patient Satisfaction survey is short and simple. No one wants to spend more than two or three minutes answering questions. Aim for seven to eight questions, and avoid more than 10 or patients are more apt to abandon the survey before completion. Keep the survey focused by determining a primary area of interest. Are you looking for feedback on the facility, the patient’s treatment, staff, or another area of service?
For a general survey, create a combination of questions that offer insight into each of these areas. Key questions may include but are not limited to:
- How did you hear about us? (Provide space for the answer or offer list of 5 options such as online, friend/family referral.)
- Was your wait time: longer than anticipated, about expected, or too long/unacceptably long?
- Was our medical team courteous and knowledgeable? (Not very knowledgeable, somewhat knowledgeable, very knowledgeable)
- Rate your level of satisfaction with our staff: extremely happy, satisfied, neutral, slightly dissatisfied, not happy. Open-ended questions can range from “How did you find us?” to “ What could we have done better ?”
The majority of the survey should be one-click answers, but including one or two open-ended questions at the end can help provide more detailed data to help identify problems or successes.
3. Ratings for Improved Data and Analysis
From established companies to start-ups, satisfaction surveys play an important role in a variety of industries. Beyond healthcare, industries such as tourism, banking, consumer goods, retail, automotive, insurance, and technology rely on survey ratings to collect data essential to product development, expanded services, and the improvement of overall customer satisfaction.
An example of a rating question is the Net Promoter Score ®. This question asks your patients how likely it is that they recommend your healthcare service to a family member or a friend. The question will not only tell you how satisfied your patients are with your service but will also tell you if they like you enough to recommend you to others.
4. Follow Up with Email Collection
At the end of the survey, include a field for an email address. Email address collection makes it easy to initiate follow-up surveys and build a database for your organization’s newsletter, alerts, or other communications. It’s another level of patient interaction, which increases their personal investment in their healthcare.
With the automated email feature, you can write an email that goes out to all the patients that give you a low rating or express having a bad experience through the survey. This is a great tool to show your patients you care about them and gives you a chance to stay in touch with them instead of losing them because of one bad experience.
5. Utilize Incentives for Survey Completion
Everyone loves an incentive, which is why retailers offer coupons, BOGOs, and loyalty cards. Incentives for completing a Patient Satisfaction survey may vary greatly depending on the healthcare organization. It may be as simple as a link to a free ebook published by your clinic/organization, a coupon for a free service or discounted service, or a physical item like a water bottle with your logo. Not all surveys need incentives, but if you’re struggling for participation it may help.
For a patient satisfaction survey, using a kiosk or an iPad with the mobile survey available right in the office can increase participation. Make it hassle-free, quick, and the questions clear for an engaging survey that will generate the data you want and need.