December 1998 Bulletin
Patient satisfaction form should be short, simple
A good patient satisfaction survey should fit on
the front and back of one page says Kevin W. Sullivan, of Sullivan/Luallin
in San Diego. Each of the questions should be written so that
the patient can answer on a five-point rating scale: excellent,
very good, good, fair, or poor. Questions should seek to answer
the following questions:
- Staff. How did the patient relate to each staff person he
or she came in contact with. (The survey should inquire about
each position individually, using title rather than name to identify
the various employees.)
- Communication. These questions should ask how well your practice
kept the patient informed. Did the doctor return the patients
calls? Did the patient understand the instructional materials
given to him or her? Did he or she receive test results in a timely
- Interaction with the physician. Did the physician listen to
the patient? Did the physician answer the patient's questions?
How thorough was the exam? Did the patient have a chance to express
what was on his or her mind?
- Facility. Was the patient able to find the facility easily?
Were the signs adequate? Was the facility comfortable? Was it
- General. What is the patient's overall rating of the practice?
- Referral. Would the patient refer the facility to a friend?
How did you do? Sullivan says that if 85 percent
of the responses were not in the "excellent" or "very
good" categories, you have a problem. It would be very easy
to take patients away from you.