Patient Questionnaires – Are You Using Them?

Recently, an idea came up about sending out questionnaires to patients (or families of patients) we transport to the ED. The idea behind this is to gauge our performance, and use the completed forms as a “quick and dirty” QI process while we establish better procedures.

I would like to hear feedback from anyone who has implemented this, and how this had an impact (if any) on patient care, procedures, SOPs, or anything else.

We’re also in the middle of putting together a list of questions to include on the form, so if anyone wouldn’t mind sharing theirs, I would be grateful. If you don’t want to post it here, feel free to email it to me. I make it a point to keep my sources anonymous, so your name and/or department/squad/company will not be disclosed to anyone (I’ll just copy the questions down on a pad and shred the original at home.)

Thanks, and have a safe Holiday weekend.

  • Justin Schorr

    My dept considered this a number of years ago and our new medical director brought it up as well. After much discussion we agreed it would not get us any new information than we already had.
    We already receive letters of thanks from those who are willing to take the time to thank the crews, this would be our “10” scores. And we already get complaints from those who take the time to complain, those would be our “0” scores. The scores we really want, the 5s and 7s and such will most likely not take the time to take part in a survey, leaving us with information we’re already gathering.
    I would love to have the resources to follow up on every refusal via telephone the next day and use a guided survey to track their well being and our people.


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  •!/Longshothero Lonnie H.

    My company considered it for a while too, actually. I guess my attitude, and why no one has initiated them as of yet, is the information we’d get back would be on more of ‘customer service’ level, which will differ from patient to patient.
    While I absolutely agree, that sometimes with our ‘grab-and-go’ attitude in EMS we can get a little.. impersonal, the experience, even if we use the same crew, will differ from patient to patient based on their expectations. Just like it would in retail.

  • Ambulance Driver

    It’s a double-edged sword.

    While the feedback may be useful from a customer-service standpoint, too much weight can be placed on it.

    And Exhibit A in the “Customer Feedback Questionnaire Becomes Popularity Contest That Purports to Measure Job Performance,” are the Press-Ganey scores that many hospitals use to evaluate their ED physicians.

    Go find an ED doc that you respect, and ask him/her their opinion on Press Ganey.

    I’ll bet a thousand bucks it’s 180 degrees from the way the hospital administrators think of it.

  • amber

    my company uses something like this called CARE cards, its basically a short survey that can be filled out by a nurse/patient/family/staff. its been updated with more options but you check boxes that say how was your timeliness, professionalism, helpfulness and would they reccommend to others (theres another option i cant remember off the top of my head)

    it serves 2 purposes though, QA and securing hospital contracts. it has its upsides and downs since we ‘have’ to get one for each run number, it is kind of awkward to ask for, but most of the nurses know the drill and dont mind.
    feel free to email me for more info
    (as far as i know this is not proprietary information so i hopefully will not get in to trouble)

    • DiverMedic

      Thanks, Amber. Can you email me your contact info?

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