Outpatient Surgery Magazine

OR Excellence 2019 Awards - September 2019 - Subscribe to Outpatient Surgery Magazine

Outpatient Surgery Magazine, providing current information on Surgical Services, Surgical Facility Administration, Outpatient Surgery News and Trends, OR Excellence and more.

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Page 61 of 144

staff. "If we get negative feedback on a survey, a director will follow up with the patient through a hand-written card or even a direct phone call," says Ms. Williams. "A lot of patients are surprised to get a call from a director because they think 'I'm filling out this survey, but it's not gonna do anything.' The phone call shows them that we do intend to do something." The goal, of course, is to prevent negative comments in the first place. That's easier said than done — especially in those situations where impatient patients' procedures are delayed, and they're asked to wait for longer-than-expected stretches of time. Lakeland's staff is able to reduce patients' frustration simply by suggesting they watch some- thing on the facility-provided iPads, a patient-satisfier that's mainly used for children but is available for everyone. In other cases, the staff takes a preemptive approach. When patients appear a bit antsy, Lakeland staff will approach the patient before the patient approaches them and present gift cards for local area restaurants. "We'll go up to the patient and say, 'Look I'm sorry you've waited so long. Here's a gift card for you guys to have a meal on us,'" says Ms. Williams. Lakeland generally gives out around 4 or 5 gift cards per month for a variety of reasons, and Ms. Williams says it's helped to minimize any negative responses on the facility's patient surveys. After surgery, every patient receives a hand-written card from the entire staff at Lakeland. Each department gets his or her entire staff to sign the cards, so patients will routinely get cards with signatures in the double-digits. "It's something our patients definitely appreciate," says Ms. Williams. "A large amount of our surveys include comments from patients saying how much they liked the personal touch of the thank-you cards." If you're looking for ways to ramp up your own facility's patient satisfaction efforts, Ms. Williams can't stress the importance of the 6 2 • O U T PA T I E N T S U R G E R Y M A G A Z I N E • S E P T E M B E R 2 0 1 9

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