Jan 26 2012

Reach the Bar, Raise the Bar

UMHS has a New Patient Satisfaction Goal

In early 2011, UMHS achieved and surpassed its organizational target of 90 on the all-UMHS patient satisfaction index. The index represents the combined overall patient rating of care in all major patient care areas, including:

  • University Hospital
  • Cardiovascular Center
  • Mott/Holden
  • Women’s Birthing
  • Ambulatory Care
  • Emergency Department

How do we calculate patient satisfaction scores?

  • The UMHS score is not a percentage of patients satisfied with their care
  • Individual business units within UMHS measure patient satisfaction in many different ways
  • The UMHS score is a combination of these scores, calculated to create one overall score
  • Think of it like this: To get a 90 score on a five-point scale, half of the respondents would have given us the highest score (5) and the other half with the next highest rating (4). To get above a 90, more than half of the respondents would have to give us the highest score.

This significant accomplishment reflects steady improvements in patient satisfaction over the past five years, largely due to how our caregivers and other staff interact with patients and families. In fact, much credit in creating the Ideal Patient Care Experience is based on the platinum rule: treat others as they would like to be treated.

Health System leadership has now raised the bar, challenging faculty and staff to achieve a 93 overall rating of care.

Not all business units measure patient satisfaction in exactly the same way, but the universal rule to treat patients and families with respect, compassion, courtesy and kindness is a common goal across the institution. The results show significant improvements in how well we do this in both inpatient and outpatient settings, especially for doctors and nurses.Some highlights:

UMHS Overall

The current UMHS patient satisfaction index is 91.1, exceeding the previous goal of 90.

Ambulatory Care

  • In October 2011, another all-time high on rating of care (91.3), the 11th consecutive improvement over the past five years
  • Improvements in cleanliness, rating of provider, likelihood of returning to the same clinic and provider

Read the rest of this entry »

Jan 17 2012

Room Service with a Smile

U-M’s Patient Food and Nutrition Services takes customer service to the next level.

In 2012, renovations to Level B2 of University Hospital will allow Patient Food and Nutrition Services to implement a “room service” delivery model, giving patients in UH and the Cardiovascular Center more control over the timing and selection of the food they receive. 

But for Associate Director of Patient Food Service Ann MacLean, her staff is just as important in creating the ideal patient care experience.

“We want to ensure that our patients can not only expect great food delivered when they want it, but that their food will be served by knowledgeable and caring staff,” she says.

Delivering meals to patients can be a complicated process. In addition to being able to operate food service equipment, tray passers need a working knowledge of special diets, NPO procedures (which stands for Nil Per Os, Latin for Nothing by Mouth), patient identification protocol, and complex isolation precautions. They must integrate this knowledge with exceptional customer service skills to interact effectively with a diverse spectrum of people including patients, family members and hospital staff. Read the rest of this entry »

Jan 12 2012

First-of-its-kind surgery helps cancer patient keep her voice

University of Michigan-pioneered technique uses piece of patient’s shoulder blade to reconstruct key neck structure

When Sherry Wittenberg was diagnosed with a rare cancer in the cricoid cartilage of her larynx, doctors told her the only way to treat the condition was to remove her voice box. The operation would leave her unable to speak normally and would require her to breathe through a hole in her neck for the rest of her life.

Wittenberg sought a second opinion at the University of Michigan Health System, where Douglas Chepeha, M.D., M.S.P.H., offered her an alternative – the option of undergoing a new procedure that, if successful, would allow her to keep her voice.

The technique, detailed online ahead of print publication in The Laryngoscope, reconstructs a ring of cartilage in a patient’s neck called the cricoid with a slice from the tip of one shoulder blade. Read the rest of this entry »

Jan 5 2012

The UMHS big picture, just a few clicks away

A snapshot of where to find some of the best information about our organization

Scenario #1: A computer application developer arrives for work at the Health System’s Arbor Lakes facility off Plymouth Road, takes the stairs two at a time to a cubicle on the third floor, and begins a day’s work to write code that will help UMHS launch a new computer system in February.

Scenario #2: An anesthesiologist and nurse in the Von Voigtlander Women’s Hospital huddle in a birthing room trying to prevent a mom-to-be from fainting during an epidural procedure.

Scenario #3: An aspiring researcher pulls into the commuter lot just as the bus arrives, jumps aboard and rides to a lab in MedSci II with contained excitement about a single glass vial that could contain all the ingredients for a medical breakthrough.

The Cardiovascular Center atrium.

There is no denying the U-M Health System is a huge organization that employs just about every type of employee one might imagine. So, as I sit here in the North Campus Administrative Complex writing internal communications, it’s easy to forget there is a surgeon performing a transplant, a laundry feeder-folder preparing patient linens, and a financial analyst budgeting for cutting edge medical equipment. At the end of the day, though, we are all charged with putting Health System patients and families first to create the future of health care through discovery.

As we work to keep the Health System’s big picture in mind, where do we find what we need to know?

Below are some handy links to keep informed about the size and shape of our institution, its strategic goals, the people guiding the ship, and the types of great work occurring every day. Read the rest of this entry »