Bathroom Blogfest 2010: Customer Experience in Hospitals… Why Bathrooms Matter!Today’s post is my first experience with Bathroom Blogfest, which I understand has been going on since 2006, and offers insights from bloggers from around the globe talking about – you guessed it – bathrooms. I think the original focus was around bathrooms and the retail customer experience, but here I am, a healthcare technology blogger, going to make a “go” at this (pun very much intended). So… hospitals, bathrooms and customer experience – what could possibly be the connection?
Well, actually, measuring patient satisfaction in hospitals is a key metric for most hospital administrators, and the hospital bathroom is large part of that experience!
You may not be aware, but most hospitals have surveyed patients for their own internal use for years to ascertain patient satisfaction with their experience at the hospital. The objective is to obtain a patient’s overall rating of the hospital, and learn whether the patient would recommend it to friends and family. You would think that a patient’s perception of a hospital would be based on the clinical care they received while there, right? Well, actually, not really. Patients assume they will receive high quality clinical care at the hospital and really have no basis to compare the efficacy of their care. Unless they experience a serious clinical error, the actual clinical experience would be rated as excellent (e.g., “I went in for an appendectomy, my appendix was removed, I woke up in recovery = excellent clinical experience”).
Studies have shown that patients' perception of their hospital experience actually has to do with the following eight key topics: communication with doctors, communication with nurses, responsiveness of hospital staff, pain management, communication about medicines, discharge information, cleanliness of the hospital environment, and quietness of the hospital environment.
In 2006, in an effort to create a national standard for collecting and publicly reporting information about patient experience of hospital care, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) introduced The HCAHPS (Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems) survey. This is the first national, standardized, publicly reported survey of patients' perspectives of hospital care. HCAHPS (pronounced “H-caps”), also known as the CAHPS® Hospital Survey, is a survey instrument and data collection methodology for measuring patients’ perceptions of their hospital experience.
Three broad goals have shaped HCAHPS. First, the survey is designed to produce data about patients’ perspectives of care that allow objective and meaningful comparisons of hospitals on topics that are important to consumers. Second, public reporting of the survey results creates new incentives for hospitals to improve quality of care. Third, public reporting serves to enhance accountability in health care by increasing transparency of the quality of hospital care provided in return for the public investment.
Tying this all back to the 1960s is a bit of a challenge, but I did find this great blog post on Nursing in the 1960s so you can see what it was like back in the days of Don Draper. I can say that at least hospitals seem much more interested in the patient experience today, and less focused on the antiquated and elitist antics that were once so prevalent in the physician/nurse relationship (although I’m sure some of that still exists today).
So, what does that have to do with bathrooms and patient experience? Out of 26 questions asked of patients following a hospital stay, 3 are directly related to bathrooms:
Q. During this hospital stay, how often were your room and bathroom kept clean?
A. Never | Sometimes | Usually | Always
Q. During this hospital stay, did you need help from nurses or other hospital staff in getting to the bathroom or in using a bedpan?
A. Yes | No
Q. How often did you get help in getting to the bathroom or in using a bedpan as soon as you wanted?
A. Never | Sometimes | Usually | Always
Interesting that these questions are just as important to the patient experience as whether you were treated with courtesy and respect, if you felt listened to, how well your pain was controlled, whether treatments were explained to you in a way you could understand.
On a scale of 1-10, patients are asked to rate the hospital where 0 is the worst hospital possible and 10 is the best hospital possible – and obviously, bathrooms matter – even in hospitals!
~ Valerie Fritz
PS: The 2010 Bathroom Blogfest Participants include the following bloggers and blogs. You can follow the week’s activities on Facebook and via Twitter if you follow #BathroomEXP:
|Blogger||Blog Name||Blog URL|
|Susan Abbott||Customer Experience Crossroads||http://www.customercrossroads.com/customercrossroads/|
|Paul Anater||Kitchen and Residential Design||http://www.kitchenandresidentialdesign.com/|
|Shannon Bilby||Big Bob's Outlet||http://blog.bigbobsoutlet.com/|
|Shannon Bilby||Carpets N More Blog||http://blog.carpetsnmore.com/|
|Shannon Bilby||Dolphin Carpet Blog||http://blog.dolphincarpet.com/|
|Shannon Bilby||From The Floors Up||http://fromthefloorsup.com/|
|Shannon Bilby||My Big Bob's Blog||http://blog.mybigbobs.com/|
|Toby Bloomberg||Diva Marketing||http://bloombergmarketing.blogs.com/|
|Laurence Borel||Blog Till You Drop||http://www.laurenceborel.com/|
|Bill Buyok||Avente Tile Talk Blog||http://tiletalk.blogspot.com/|
|Jeanne Byington||The Importance of Earnest Service||http://blog.jmbyington.com/|
|Becky Carroll||Customers Rock!||http://customersrock.net/|
|Marianna Chapman||Results Revolution||http://www.resultsrevolution.com/|
|Katie Clark||Practial Katie||http://practicalkatie.blogspot.com/|
|Nora DePalma||American Standard's Professor Toilet||http://www.professortoilet.com/|
|Nora DePalma||O'Reilly DePalma: The Blog||http://www.oreilly-depalma.com/blog/|
|Leigh Durst||LivePath Experience Architect Weblog||http://livepath.blogspot.com/|
|Valerie Fritz||The AwarepointBlog||http://www.awarepointblog.com/|
|Iris Garrott||Checking In and Checking Out||http://circulating.wordpress.com/|
|Tish Grier||The Constant Observer||http://spap-oop.blogspot.com/|
|Renee LeCroy||Your Fifth Wall||http://yourfifthwall.com/|
|Joseph Michelli||Dr. Joseph Michelli's Blog||www.josephmichelli.com/blog|
|Veronika Miller||Modenus Blog||http://www.modenus.com/blog|
|Arpi Nalbandian||TILE Magazine Editor Blog||http://www.tilemagonline.com/Articles/Blog_Nalbandian|
|Maria Palma||People 2 People Service||http://www.people2peopleservice.com/|
|Reshma Bachwani Paritosh||The Qualitative Research Blog||http://www.onqualitativeresearch.blogspot.com/|
|David Polinchock||Polinchock's Ponderings||http://blog.polinchock.com/|
|Victoria Redshaw & Shelley Pond||Scarlet Opus Trends Blog||http://trendsblog.co.uk/|
|David Reich||My 2 Cents||http://reichcomm.typepad.com/my_weblog/|
|Sandy Renshaw||Around Des Moines||http://www.arounddesmoines.com/|
|Sandy Renshaw||Purple Wren||http://www.purplewren.com/|
|Bethany Richmond||Carpet and Rug Institute Blog||http://www.carpet-and-rug-institute-blog.com/|
|Bruce Sanders||RIMtailing Blog||http://rimtailing.blogspot.com/|
|Steve Tokar||Please Be Seated||http://stevetokar.wordpress.com/|
|Carolyn Townes||Becoming a Woman of Purpose||http://spiritwomen.blogspot.com/|
|Christine B. Whittemore||Flooring The Consumer||http://flooringtheconsumer.blogspot.com/|
|Christine B. Whittemore||Simple Marketing Blog||http://www.simplemarketingblog.com/|
|Christine & Ted Whittemore||Smoke Rise & Kinnelon Blog||http://smokerise-nj.blogspot.com/|
|Christine B. Whittemore||The Carpetology Blog||http://carpetology.blogspot.com/|
|Linda Wright||LindaLoo Build Business With Better Bathrooms||http://lindaloo.com/|