Leadership
Clip
The Full Picture on Patient Satisfaction Scores (03:45)

Posting patient satisfaction scores online is important for organizational transparency, but how might physicians react to potentially negative feedback? Vivian Lee, CEO of University of Utah Health Care, and Akram Boutros, President and CEO of The MetroHealth System, describe transparency efforts at their institutions.

Transparency was a gradual process at University of Utah Health Care. At first, patient satisfaction scores were only given privately to individual physicians, according to Lee. Best practices were then shared to help physicians improve, followed by the ability for University of Utah’s providers to view each other’s scores.

Before going public with provider scores, University of Utah held a number of town halls. There was “a fair amount of resistance” in the beginning, admits Lee. “I tried to remind people always that when you’re a consumer and you go to Amazon or Yelp or TripAdvisor or whatever, if you don’t read a few bad comments, you don’t even believe they’re real.” The town halls generated a lot of discussion, “but by the time we went live I think all but two of our physicians had at least a score of four out of five stars,” says Lee. “People had really improved a lot.”

Similarly, at MetroHealth, physicians with lower-than-expected scores did not want those scores made public. To change their minds, says Boutros, physicians with good results were encouraged to tell their colleagues, “I want my results out there,” and explain that you can’t only post the good scores and not the bad ones. In the first year of going public with patient satisfaction ratings, MetroHealth gave awards to about 60 or 70 employees with scores in the 90th percentile. “This year, we gave 280 awards for people in the 90th percentile,” says Boutros. “So as Vivian says, you have to approach it whichever way, but you’ve got to get over the hurdle of ‘this is going to be negative.’”

From the NEJM Catalyst event Leadership: Translating Challenge to Success at Mayo Clinic, June 2, 2016.

More From Leadership
Framework for Comprehensive Community Wellness

A Vision for Upending the Siloed Status Quo

A five-point plan unveils ways that leaders of health care and public health organizations can take action to enhance community wellness.

Mangi01_pullquote - patient flow dynamic work design

Improving Patient Flow with Dynamic Work Design

Staff make big improvements in post-operative care by changing small details.

Lerman01_pullquote leadership development

Leadership Development in Medicine

It is time for a critical assessment of the ways in which health systems develop, select, and support emerging physician leaders.

Perlo01_pullquote community organizing principles for restoring joy in work in health care

Applying Community Organizing Principles to Restore Joy in Work

IHI offers four lessons on how to nurture joy in the health care workforce.

MHCM Physician Leaders Career Paths Post-Graduation

Physician Leader Training: The Value, Impact, and Challenges

Alumni of Harvard’s postgraduate Master in Health Care Management degree program reveal the benefits of academic training, and the real-world challenges for new clinical leaders that can lead to success as well as frustration.

Nurok02_pullquote - physician-hero - team-based care

The Adverse Impact of the Physician-Hero

In a value-based world, the sickest patients need the benefit of a comprehensive team to provide evidence-based treatment that will deliver desirable clinical outcomes while optimizing the cost of care.

Patel01_pullquote - interprofessional education and collaboration

Interprofessional Collaboration for a Health System in Crisis

To overcome current failures within our health systems, we need to improve interprofessional education and collaboration.

Tina Freese Decker

Cultivating “Systemness” to Create Personalized, High-Reliability Health Care

Becoming a high-reliability health system that is personalized, efficient, and effective means making some tough choices.

Shapiro01_pullquote - Using Simulations to Improve Physician Leadership Hiring

Using Simulations to Improve Physician Leadership Hiring

Department chairs are expected to motivate and inspire a diverse group of smart, ambitious, overworked physicians. But for most, it’s a challenge.

Standard Daily Management Visual Board at Baptist Health

Using Daily Management and Visual Boards to Improve Key Indicators and Staff Engagement

Baptist Health leverages Daily Management as a way to engage frontline staff and create a data-driven problem-solving culture to help the health system achieve its goals.

Connect

A weekly email newsletter featuring the latest actionable ideas and practical innovations from NEJM Catalyst.

Learn More »

Topics

Leading Teams

141 Articles

Leadership Development in Medicine

It is time for a critical assessment of the ways in which health systems develop,…

Physician Burnout

37 Articles

Applying Community Organizing Principles to Restore…

IHI offers four lessons on how to nurture joy in the health care workforce.

Leading Transformation

206 Articles

Survey Snapshot: Design Thinking Is Useful,…

NEJM Catalyst Insights Council members agree that design thinking useful, but leadership buy-in and understanding…

Insights Council

Have a voice. Join other health care leaders effecting change, shaping tomorrow.

Apply Now