A walk towards Patient Delight
A patient comes to a hospital with only one thing in their hand i.e hope and that hope is taken care differently by different person. Some respects it, some motivates, some put it down and some rather crush it sometimes.
Patient delight is some new trend that is being practiced all over but here we have not yet reached patient satisfaction .A patient is satisfied when he gets or when his hopes gets fulfilled whereas a patient is delighted when his hopes are fulfilled beyond the level he expects. Have we seen a hospital where we feel like yes this is what i wanted? An aesthetically beautiful building ,very polite and courteous frontline staffs an excellent signage system, tidy and smart security personnel ,healthy and clean environment ,few staffs always there to guide you, a doctor who counsels you till you are convinced, nursing staffs who keeps answering your query without hesitation, a senior citizen counter and cell to take care of them ,disable friendly surroundings and infrastructure, fast and quality service and when you pay for the services you really pay it happily. I am ashamed being a part of health care industry i am helpless and i am blaming it. I regret everyday seeing a patient asking myself what have we provided him. Is he satisfied? Did we take care of his unsaid hopes? We are the one who have been trying to develop. its not one man's job. Its a responsibility of each person working in hospital.
How to step towards Patient Delight?
Hospitals that have prioritized patient experience and satisfaction have reaped results. It’s been a long and ongoing journey for them but the returns have been manifold. It has helped them establish a repeatable process for good patient experience and satisfaction and retain positive word of mouth.
- Dealing with Waiting Time:
Waiting is one of the most dreaded things for patients. The waiting experience includes registration time, time to triage, time to find the physician, time for room allocation, time to treatment and time to disposition. As much as it is exhausting, it is something that is inescapable. We need to engage our patients .We need to kill their time in Hospital .Our ambience must be pleasant so that even patient can enjoy being at Hospital. Hospitality has to be made strong in Hospitals now.
- Promise Timeline :
We need to promise quality care and timeline to finish the cycle of treatment. If the waiting time exceeds the promised timeline, we must ensure that they know the reason for the delay and inform them of the updated waiting time.
- Understand and listen their need
Empathy is the most over used term, yet most under practiced. And those who do practice it fail to understand that their body language too needs to be in sync with empathy. Most of the stress is mitigated with this one simple gesture!
- Always smile: Our smile is a great weapon to heal heart and pain.Our smile shows our confidence in taking care of patient .Smile along with a positive gesture towards patient that you are there for them creates a huge impact.
- Ambience: It always remains a neglected area in health care sector. A good ambience is that which makes the space resonate with positivity by all means possible. A wall with a positive quote on it, well ventilated space, the warmth of the staffs, the frequent visits by their loved ones, the feeling of security imparted by the doctors during check up; all of these add to the ambience factor. Apart from the regular medicines, patients highly depend on such external factors to feel better and have a pleasant experience. Changing their bed sheets every day and cleaning their room as and when required are things that have immediate psychological impact on patients. ‘It’s all in the mind’ type of thing which we have to catch in this case.
- Quality care: Dedicated service ,Strong Medical Care and Nursing Team ,Timely treatment ,Proper Diagnosis all in combination leads to quality care resulting to Patient Satisfaction
Above mentioned points are just basics but we need to improve a lot in various sections.
The healthcare ecosystem is based on trust. The stakes are big and emotions run high. Patients put their trust in the hands of hospitals and their experience governs the reputation and growth of a hospital. To meet this huge responsibility, Let's put our hands together on improving patient experience. Let's focus on unfocused factor so called "Patient delight".
Iru Poudel, B.P.T,M.H.A,PGD(Counseling Psyc.)
Om Hospital & Research Centre (P) Ltd.