KumusText: Improving Patient Experience and Satisfaction with SMS
JADE A MALICDAN, RN, MAN
Patient Experience Officer
Professional Education, Training, and Research Office (PETRO)
The growth of text messaging (SMS) has matured over the last several years across all industries to incorporate texting into their operations and costumer communications. SMS has been successful as a communication channel because it provides an efficient, private and convenient way to interact.
Turning Challenges into Opportunities
Baguio General Hospital & Medical Center (BGHMC) faced the challenge of a real-time feedback system to improve patient experience and satisfaction. Through the collaboration of the Professional Education, Training, and Research Office (PETRO), the Office of Patient Experience (OPX), and the Management Information Section (MIS), the KumusText Program was developed.
Through this new, innovative application of communication media, each patient is contacted the next day following admission to the hospital and were asked for their experience during their visit.
It is well known that use of mobile phones are quickly becoming the preferred media of communication, and it was soon discovered that through “texting” patients were more apt to respond to follow-up communication. This was validated from many received texts, including this one from a patient:
“Nice text messaging system, very convenient. Thank you for following up.”
Through this new, innovative application of communication media, each patient is contacted the next day following admission at BGHMC and they were asked for their experience during their visit. As another patient writes:
“My visit w/ ur hospital, I would rate 10/10. I especially liked the immediate texting, showing the extra effort & concern 4 ur patients. I deeply appreciate d quality of service bghmc gives to every patient.”
Patients are also contacted one day after discharge to receive a survey text requesting their overall rating of the care they received during their stay at BGHMC. It is not uncommon to receive texts similar to this from a patient:
“Maraming salamat po sa pangungumusta. Pinasasalamatan q ung dc2r na ngsagawa ng opersyon sa akin ganundin sa mga kasamhn nya, sa mga nurse na nakaduty habng aky na confine. Salamat po sa good service po na ipinagkaloob nyo sa akin. YAHWEH BLESS sa inyong lahat.”
KumusText become a strategic tool for BGHMC to have a view of collected patient feedback and channel communications to provide a picture of patient experience and satisfaction in order to identify actions to improve. By doing so, the patients are able to contact the Patient Experience Office to acknowledge their feedback. With this method, real time feedback and conflict resolution is achieved greater with the program. Any text noting poor patient experience are automatically and immediately directed to the department/unit/ward/section leadership.
Patients embraced this new KumusText, this is shown by their active engagement to the program. Connecting with the patient and providing an “open door” to care post discharge is recognized by our patients. Not only do we see a rise in our patient satisfaction scores, but we receive many (unsolicited) positive comments that we share with the physicians, nurses, social workers, medical technologies, general services and all personnel of BGHMC. Thus encouraging and reinforcing the positive patient experience they have created.
“Excellent experience, very courteous & professional. Especially liked the text message from BGHMC staff to check on patient. This is going above & beyond after discharge. Thank you very much.”
Most discharged patients use the KumusText Program to rate their overall satisfaction. However, some discharged patient used the system to report any observed developing discomfort, to inquire, to suggest, and to appraise.
The Office of Patient Experience has actionable data as it receives real-time feedback on patient care and have the ability to receive immediate feedback on any target area of weakness as we have the ability to change survey questions as we see fit.
With BGHMC’s KumusText Program, an entirely new line of communication is established. With our patients utilizing this service, BGHMC is extending the care to our patients through follow up, medical direction, conflict resolution, risk reduction and an improved patient experience. Thus Baguio General Hospital & Medical Center is an “Ospital na Laging Handa at Maaasahan” in facing new challenges and improving the delivery of services to its constituents. BGHMC: READY…SET…GO!