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Patient Guide to Patient Satisfaction Surveys and Ratings

At Baystate Health, we believe in the power of patient choice and want to provide you with the information you need to choose the best provider for you. We are a national leader in quality improvement and patient safety, and we believe in complete transparency of the data of care we provide. To provide the highest quality of care to our patients, we continuously measure and improve our care including ways to increase survival rates, patient safety, and the satisfaction patients have with their experience, as we learn to be one of the safest hospitals in the country.

We’ve produced this guide to help patients, family members, and  potential patients understand how we capture the patient experience. This guide explains our patient satisfaction surveys, the various ways we deliver patient feedback to our providers, and how we have created transparent reporting to patients about our physicians.

About the Surveys

Baystate Health measures many aspects of our patients’ experience. To ensure that we are holding ourselves to the highest standards, we partner with an independent patient satisfaction organization, Professional Research Consultants (PRC). For more than 35 years, PRC has been the health care industry’s highest standard for patient satisfaction. PRC works with over 2,000 hospitals and health systems nation-wide to collect feedback from patients to improve clinical and business outcomes.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who receives a survey call?

A random sample of patients treated by Baystate Medical Practices providers are called by PRC surveyors a few days after their visit to a Baystate Medical Practice provider with the telephone number (landline or cell) that patients have provided to Baystate Health. Patients are given an opportunity to provide feedback about their experience with their provider. Over 90% of patients contacted complete the survey. Each year, approximately 11,000 Baystate Medical Practices patients respond. Results are shared with departments, senior leaders and individual providers to identify opportunities to improve care.

What questions do we ask?

Patients are invited to complete surveys based upon their outpatient office visit with their Baystate Medical Practices provider. On behalf of Baystate Health, PRC administers the CAHPS Clinician and Group practice survey, developed by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, for use in medical practices across the country. The surveys ask patients to evaluate how well their provider communicated, listened, and showed courtesy and respect toward them. Results are used to evaluate patients’ overall perception of care and to identify areas for improvement.

What do we do with the survey responses?

Survey ratings and patient comments are shared on this website for the benefit of patients and Baystate Medical Practices providers. Our providers also receive their patient ratings relative to peers on a quarterly basis. Baystate Medical Practices providers are asked to continually monitor their patients’ feedback and ratings.

How is the providers’ patient satisfaction star rating created?

Star ratings are based on patient responses to 6 questions about care from their Baystate Medical Practices provider:

  1. Did the provider/physician explain things in a way that was easy to understand?
  2. Did the provider/physician listen carefully to you?
  3. Did the provider/physician give you easy to understand information about your health questions or concerns?
  4. Did the provider/physician seem to know important information about your medical history?
  5. Did the provider/physician show respect for what you had to say?
  6. Did the provider/physician spend enough time with you?

For each provider, ratings from their patients are averaged together to form a single star rating.

In order to recognize and celebrate achievement, as well as understand what could be improved, we ask two open-ended questions:.

  1. What was outstanding?
  2. What could be improved?

Are all comments posted?

We post both positive and negative comments from the surveys. We do not post comments that are libelous, slanderous, profane, irrelevant or otherwise inappropriate, or that may risk the privacy of Baystate Medical Practices patients.

Are patients informed that their comments may be posted?

Although all comments are posted in an anonymous manner, all patients surveyed by Professional Research Consultants are asked for their permission to use comments about what was done well or is in need of improvement. Patients are informed that their comments may be featured in the online doctor rating feature of Baystate Health’s website and used to identify opportunities to improve care.

Why don’t I see patient ratings and comments for every provider?

The more ratings a provider receives, the more accurate and reliable the results will be. A provider’s rating will only be posted on the site providing they have a minimum of 30 completed surveys.

At the present time, ratings are only provided for Baystate Medical Practices providers surveyed by Professional Research Consultants by Baystate Health.

Can anyone complete a survey or post a comment about a provider?

No. Only patients having an outpatient visit by a Baystate Medical Practices provider may be selected to receive a telephone survey. This way we can confirm the results are based entirely from patients who have actually been treated by the provider.

Why post patient comments about a provider?

  1. We want patients to be able to select the best provider for them, which extends beyond solely finding a provider who treats a specific condition.
  2. We know that the patient-provider relationship is a critical element toward achieving trust, satisfaction, and positive outcomes. For this reason, we are compelled to offer our patients and our community meaningful feedback offered by prior patients to help them choose a provider.
  3. Patients increasingly want to be more involved in their care, and that starts with us being transparent by providing information that patients want and need.
  4. Providers are interested in reviewing feedback from their patients in a timely manner to improve care and relationships.

How many patients respond to surveys?

Each year, 90% of Baystate Medical Practices patients who are reached by telephone complete the survey, which totals to over 11,000 patients offering feedback about their experience.

How is patient information protected?

Patient names are not displayed through the on-line ratings or commentary reviews. All personally identifiable information is removed prior to display.

How does Baystate Health measure and monitor the quality of clinical care?

To provide the highest quality of care to our patients, we continuously measure and improve our care; we find ways to increase survival rates, patient safety, and patient satisfaction/experience as we learn to be one of the safest hospitals in the country.

Has Baystate Health won awards for their patient experience and clinical care?

Yes. Each year Baystate Health is honored to be recognized as one of the highest quality and safest health systems in the country by many organizations. Please visit our Awards page to view the numerous awards Baystate Health entities have won for providing excellent clinical care and an excellent patient experience.