Hospital Ratings Services and the DIY Approach

Hospital Ratings Services and the DIY ApproachSeptember 18, 2015 by Vickie Anenberg

Every hospital executive understands the importance of patient satisfaction and the effect it has on HCAHPS scores. But when it comes to online commercial ratings sites, there is considerable confusion, and some hospitals have taken a do-it-yourself (DIY) approach by posting their own patient scores.

Josh Zeitlin of the Advisory Board Company has recently posted an article that consists of a Q&A with two healthcare ratings experts – Alicia Dougherty, managing director of the Market Innovation Center, and Jessica Souchy, one of the senior directors of Advisory Board Performance Technologies. Their responses to a variety of questions are quite thought provoking.

For example, when asked whether providers would start including the same types of data consumers look for on sites such as Yelp, Dougherty responded, “The metrics that hospital leaders are prioritizing right now are the ones tied to value-based payments—a more pressing issue for provider organizations right now than other public data.

“And most provider organizations have been working for years on the metrics that Yelp is featuring—ED wait times, readmissions, patient satisfaction, and others. None of these are new areas of focus. However, the attention could certainly help renew staff energy and motivation around some initiatives that have been in place for several months or years.”

Dougherty made an important point by saying, “Different rating systems can produce remarkably different evaluations of the same institution. What's measured, and how measurements are aggregated, both have profound effects on the final "score." As a result, most physicians and executives rely on their internal data and methods of calculation, though even internally there's plenty of disagreement about the best approach.”

When asked about hospitals posting their own ratings, Jessica Souchy stated, “By cutting out the middle-man, organizations have a significant opportunity to garner trust from their current and potential patients—they are sending a message of openness and transparency, without waiting for a third-party to do so.

“However, it's important that an approach like this is well thought out. To keep that trust, consumers must feel that the ratings and comments are honest and direct feedback, and not filtered by the organization to only show their providers in a positive light.”

You can read the full text of this Advisory Board Q&A, and have access to related articles by clicking here.

Which approach to ratings is the best will likely be discussed for years to come. However, the one constant that remains critical to maintaining positive ratings is having the right professional staff in the right place, and at the right time.

Cross Country Staffing is ready to help with our suite of cost-effective workforce solutions that that enables our healthcare facility partners to manage their professional staffing challenges long-term.  We invite you to contact a Cross Country Staffing representative for more information about how we can customize a solution to meet your facility’s unique needs. At Cross Country Staffing, we’ve built our reputation on providing positive results, and we’re ready to serve you with a total workforce management program.