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Quality Reviews: Voicing Patient Feedback in Real Time

Edward Shin, MD, CEO & Co-Founder, Quality ReviewsEdward Shin, MD, CEO & Co-Founder, Quality Reviews
The Affordable Care Act of 2008 first incubated the idea of patient-centric outlook for health systems. However, even today, healthcare providers are largely under-equipped around making patients an effective part of strategic, technological, financial, and clinical betterment conversations. Headquartered in New York, Quality Reviews is on a mission to solve this quandary by delivering a turnaround patient feedback mechanism that ties Admission, Discharge and Transfer (ADT) system data with lightweight CRM functionalities. Quality Reviews brings consumerism to healthcare and enables hospitals and healthcare providers to listen to patient voice—all in real-time, helping them adopt a patient-centric outlook in healthcare services to fortify customer loyalty, patient retention, and build brand and reputation for real financial benefits.

RateMyHospital (RMH), a web-based patient satisfaction survey based on a user-friendly five-star rating scale, feeds useful patient feedback data to the backend dashboard for analytical purposes on-the-fly. On the credential-authenticated dashboard, the clinician or administrator user can derive insights from this data, with the help of robust reporting tools. “RateMyHospital is very valuable to our clients, especially since the tools in it are shaped by them entirely since day one,” says Edward Shin, MD, Co-Founder and CEO of Quality Reviews. In 2014, Shin and team had a simple interaction with one of their customers, which had profound results. While expressing delight over the real-time patient feedback data that helped them, the customer also elucidated a need to act on that data. This led to the creation of direct service recovery tools within RMH, an ability to call patients, document, and track service recovery activities, all on a single dashboard.

The user can access patient data, analyze feedback based on their healthcare profile, and also make a VoIP-based call from the dashboard to address any concerns the patient has with respect to the care they received during their visits. The call is auto-logged with a time and date stamp, and the user can even annotate the call with custom notes against patients’ profiles, providing information critical to decision-making, concerning patient experience management. These developments stand testimony to Shin’s belief that innovation in Quality Reviews is driven by the diverse needs of the healthcare setting as a cohesive whole for shaping customer experience. It also exemplifies RMH’s ability to provide extensive capabilities to the user by its proficiency in seamless integration with VoIP and ADT systems.

RateMyHospital integrates with the ADT systems at the healthcare setting via web-based APIs or VPN links. These integrations are based on HL7 for interoperation of data. As soon as the patient walks out of the ambulatory clinic, it signifies the completion of the care episode, and via the integration with ADT, the RMH system will be notified regarding the same. Following the visit, the patient receives a text message containing a secure link to the RateMyHospital survey, consisting of questions customized by hospital administrative leaders. An interesting enhancement to the questions is the correlation between them, explains Shin.

RateMyHospital is bringing consumerism to healthcare and enabling hospitals and healthcare providers to listen to patient voice

Each question is assigned a coefficient, decided upon by its overall effect on the final net promoter anchor question: “How likely are you to recommend our hospital?” This algorithm, developed by Quality Review’s data scientists, allows the senior management to explore dimensions of their healthcare service that needs the most attention.

In a bid to establish the advantage that RMH has over traditional paper-based or email-based surveys, Quality Reviews published a white paper, in collaboration with Mount Sinai Health Systems of New York that was aimed at enhancing the patient experience for over 600,000 Emergency Department (ED) patients across all six EDs in their system using RateMyHospital. Post the implementation of RateMyHospital in December 2014, the executive and clinical leadership at Mount Sinai Health Systems were equipped with real-time visibility of patient feedback. After the 18-month study, it was observed that RateMyHospital delivered more responses in much less median time compared to the paper and email-based survey data that was used primarily by the EDs. In June 2015, powered by several months of patient satisfaction data, Mount Sinai Health System implemented ‘SplitFlow’, a process designed to align patients’ care demands with existing ED resources. This initiative, Shin states, was an exemplary usage of RateMyHospital data and analytics to fortify overall healthcare service.

RMH’s ability to address the concerns of a mission-critical environment like an ED department on a profound level arises from its robust design. When it comes to structuring data elements depending on the clinical care setting, the platform offers a high degree of configurability. For instance, a lot of Quality Reviews’ customers in the radiology field wished to stratify patient feedback based on individual imaging modality–MRI, CT scan, and nuclear medicine. For such requirements, the Quality Reviews team sources data elements from the ADT system, and creates custom data fields, to enable the hospital leadership to view their patients’ feedback at granular levels, and in accordance with their unique needs.

As the company progresses into the latter half of 2017, its unrelenting focus on driving value to patient care is fused with works of innovation in its labs. Quality Reviews is currently working on data testing a mobile solution on the administrative side; the solution would be a HIPAA secure native application that would bring all the dashboard capabilities to mobile devices. “The ubiquity of mobile devices was a major consideration in the design phase of RMH, which contributed to an increasing number of older patients filling out the survey much faster and in larger numbers,” adds Shin.

A major contributor to the company’s ability to deliver value-based patient feedback to healthcare is a journey Shin made from academic medicine to entrepreneurship, capitalizing on a diverse set of opportunities on the way. Leading his team with this experience, he sees individuals who share his passion in serving not only hospital clients, but also patients and families—a gratifying experience of solving problems much closer to peoples’ lives. By opening a dialogue between care providers and their patients, Quality Review sets the stage for a plethora of patient-centric upgrades to the healthcare arena.