Your patients' views, on different areas of your NHS practice, are the best way to improve their satisfaction. Using the results, you can then develop a structure that is best tailored for your patients, and ensure they are happy with the service they receive at your practice.
How happy your patients are, will depend on a series of factors; the first phone call they make to schedule an appointment, waiting times, coming into the practice, their results; and so forth. Some factors which may influence their satisfaction include:
- Whether or not the receptionist is polite, and how easy it is for them to get through on the phone.
- Organisation in you practice, and the appearance of the practice.
- How long after checking in they have to wait to be seen, and how long they are actually in a consultation with the doctor or nurse.
- Whether doctors and nurses are receptive, and care about their needs.
- How the patient feels, and if they feel better, at the consultation's end.
These are a few of the factors which patients will include in their assessment, when determining the overall satisfaction, and how they felt after leaving the practice.
Use of Questionnaires
The NHS and the GMS contracts are both taking more concern with and are requiring more practices to use questionnaires, to determine patient satisfaction. Even though the responses can't be quantified 100% (meaning it is hard to determine how many patients truly feel a certain way), the use of the questionnaire, is a good way to gather an overall consensus. It is a simple way to determine which areas are flowing well, and what areas truly need work to be done, within the practice. In turn, the questionnaire can be used to determine overall satisfaction, can help evaluate how patients feel about services delivered, and can serve as a basis for further development for the practice in the future. These questionnaires require support from the entire staff and team, in order to make them successful, and help improve the practice.
Analysing the results
Analyses of certain events, and patient complaints, should be constantly monitored by the practice; additionally, there should be a system in place to deal with these complaints as they happen. By constantly discussing this with the primary care team, and office team, changes can be made; in turn, this can further enhance the effectiveness of the practice, and help to improve overall patient care.
Due to the recent demand expressed by general practice surgeries to conduct patient surveys, we have devised a survey template which can be used and customised by any GP clinics in the UK. This survey will help measure patient experience and satisfaction within the practice and will therefore help surgeries to understand where improvements are needed.
Such online surveys should be an opportunity for patients to have their say about how well their practice is doing at providing these services to them.
SmartSurvey offers a complete GP Patient Survey solution, if you have any specific queries or you would like to discuss this with a member of our team then contact us FREE on 0800 0937 822.