patient experience

How Can the Patient Experience be Improved?

Along with getting the right nursing home insurance, one of the most important aspects of nursing is ensuring a favorable patient experience. The Beryl Institute defines this as the sum of all patient and caregiver interactions. Typically determined by the care provider’s organizational culture, it significantly affects the patient’s perception of the care services.

Ideally, the goal of any facility or care service is to exceed patient expectations. But rather than achieving this goal by chance, efforts should be made to establish and maintain a patient-focused culture for improving nursing care. This culture should encompass personnel hiring, onboarding, and service development.

Key indicators for improving patient experience

Another integral aspect of the process is identifying areas of excellence and areas that need improvement. This is typically done via intensive evaluation of the facility based on the following factors:

Leadership and culture. Factors such as the leadership organization and structure, values and objectives, and operational procedures often determine the quality of services provided.

Infrastructure. It isn’t enough to have the proper operational structures and processes in place. To improve the patient experience, it is also necessary to guide the team accordingly and sustain its strategic objectives.

Caregiver engagement. Facility owners and administrators should also make an effort to engage and address the needs of staff and caregivers. Doing so will help ensure a more favorable patient experience.

Policy. The quality of nursing care is often just as dependent on financial and systemic policies as external factors. Understanding these factors will help measure results and drive the necessary action.

Environment. The environment in which nursing care is provided often plays a significant role in affecting patient experience. Nursing practices and the delivery of services should be tailored to ensure positive and compassionate encounters.

Technological innovation. Nursing facilities and personnel should strive to remain abreast of the latest technologies in the nursing care industry. Knowledge of new procedures and tools will help enhance efficiency and overcome limitations in patient care.

Community engagement. Nursing care facilities can improve their services considerably by engaging and getting feedback from patients and the community they serve. Partnerships and interaction with these stakeholders could only help uplift care standards and improve the patient experience.

Clinical excellence. Nursing homes personnel and caregivers should strive for clinical excellence at all times. With this focus in mind, everything else‒including patient safety, service quality, reliability, and care effectiveness‒will follow as a matter of course.

Specific strategies for improving the patient experience

Apart from evaluating the factors mentioned above, care facility owners and administrators can also improve the patient experience by taking the following measures:

Hiring the right personnel. Hiring the right caregivers will help reduce turnover rates, ensuring the continued delivery of consistently safe and high-quality care. Rather than hiring nurses based on need and preferences, facilities are better served by choosing candidates based on their qualifications and suitability for the job. It would also help to standardize the pre-hire screening process and work on the effective compilation of candidate profiles.

Improve the onboarding process. The work doesn’t end with the acceptance of an applicant. Onboarding is just as crucial as the hiring process with regard to ensuring the caregiver’s productivity and retention. Traditional onboarding processes that typically weigh candidates via a rigidly defined set of standards tend to be less effective than programs that consider new hires’ unique needs and preferences. 

Invest in continued learning and education. Employers should support and encourage their workers’ continuous learning and professional development by investing in further study and education. As the landscape of the nursing care profession changes, facility owners and administrators should provide the means by which caregivers can maintain competitiveness and enhance their ability to provide better patient service.

Ultimately, nursing care should involve the continuous improvement of the quality of services provided to patients. It can be a challenging and never-ending job, but it has its rewards. Training and educating caregivers with an emphasis on patient care is an essential part of this process.

It is equally important to choose the right personnel, implement a personalized onboarding program, and encourage professional development and constant learning. Making a conscious effort to prioritize patience-centered care makes it possible for any facility to improve the patient experience considerably.

About Caitlin Morgan

Caitlin Morgan specializes in insuring assisted living facilities and nursing homes and can assist you in providing insurance and risk management services for this niche market. Give us a call to learn more about our programs at (877) 226-1027.