MNCM News

"The two words ‘information’ and ‘communication’ are often used interchangeably, but they signify quite different things. Information is giving out; communication is getting through." -- Sydney J. Harris

Local clinics score above average in patient experience

By Stephanie Dickrell, sdickrell@stcloudtimes.com 10:31 a.m. CDT August 26, 2015

Nearly 80 percent of Minnesota’s patients give their health care providers a top rating of nine or 10 on a 10-point scale, but only about 60 percent of patients said they experienced a top level of access to care.

The results of the 2015 Patient Experience of Care Survey were released Wednesday by the Minnesota Department of Health and MN Community Measurement.

Locally, CentraCare and a few other clinics were included in the survey, scoring average or above in all categories.

This is the second time that Minnesota has conducted the nation’s largest statewide patient experience survey.

Patient opinion hasn’t changed much since the first survey in 2013, according to officials.

The survey included 200,500 patients at 765 clinics in Minnesota and neighboring communities who had appointments between September 1 and November 30, 2014. This year’s survey indicates that patient opinion hasn’t changed much since the first survey in 2013.

Local results

Here are the local results. Categories include: getting care when needed, how well providers communicate, courteous and helpful office staff and providers with “most positive” rating.

  • CentraCare River Campus — Rheumatology in St. Cloud scored above average in all indicators.
  • CentraCare Health Sauk Center scored average on getting health care when needed and courteous and helpful office staff. It scored above average in providers with a “most positive” rating. Results on how well providers communicate were not available.
  • CentraCare Health — Monticello Medical Group scored average on getting care when needed and how well providers communicate. It scored above average on courteous and helpful office staff and a “most positive” rating.
  • CentraCare River Campus — Nephrology scored above average in all categories.
  • CentraCare Health Paynesville-Richmond scored above average in getting care when needed and the “most positive” category. It scored average in how well providers communicated and courteous and helpful office staff.
  • CentraCare Health Plaza — Dermatology scored scored average in getting care when needed and the “most positive” category. It scored above average in how well providers communicated and courteous and helpful office staff.
  • Lakewood Health System — Sartell Clinic scored average in getting care when needed and the “most positive” category. It scored above average in how well providers communicated and courteous and helpful office staff.
  • Williams Integracare Clinic scored average in getting care when needed and above average in the rest of the categories.

Other highlights

Though patients are generally having a good experience, the survey did find significant differences between clinics. Here are some highlights from the survey:

  • 79 percent of respondents gave their provider a top rating of nine or 10 on a 10-point scale – a statistically significant one point increase over the 2013 result. Individual clinic ratings ranged from 49 to 97 percent of providers receiving a top rating.
  • 83 percent of respondents described communication from their providers as top-level. Across individual clinics, the low score was 54 percent and the high score was 94 percent.
  • 81 percent of respondents gave the office staff at their clinics top marks for being respectful and helpful. However, a 40 percentage point difference can be seen between the highest and lowest scoring clinics.
  • Nineteen percent, or 121, more clinics participated in the survey than two years ago.
  • Clinics participating in the state’s Health Care Homes initiative included additional questions in the patient experience of care survey. For over half of all certified Health Care Homes, at least 60 percent of their patients reported a positive score in relation to shared decision making, and at least 50 percent of their patients reported a positive score in relation to attention to mental health.

Results are based on 200, 500 patient-completed surveys on patient experience of care – known as the Clinician and Group Surveys – Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems. Thirty-three percent of the patients surveyed responded, which is a similar response rate as 2013.

Minnesota conducts the nation’s largest statewide patient experience survey.

Follow Stephanie Dickrell on Twitter @SctimesSteph, call her at 255-8749 or find more stories at www.sctimes.com/sdickrell.

Survey measures

The survey measures patient experience in terms of whether patients were:

  • Getting care when needed.
  • Being listened to and receiving understandable information and instructions.
  • Experiencing courteous and helpful office staff.
  • Satisfied with their provider.

View the original article from the SCTimes