Purpose for the Program
In July 2008, our obstetric Press Ganey patient satisfaction raw score hit an all-time low of 86.5. We were frustrated and discouraged and knew there were many contributing factors, including an outdated physical space, unengaged obstetric staff, and lack of amenities for our patients and families. Despite brainstorming regarding the possible fixes and discussions with staff in monthly meetings, our scores stayed low.
In 2009, we formed a multidisciplinary team consisting of the obstetric nursing divisional director, nurse managers, and representatives from patient relations, nutrition, environmental services, and research. We invited a member of our hospital family advisory council to give a patient perspective. Objectives were established for igniting the passion in our staff to make the patient experience extraordinary.
Implementation, Outcomes, and Evaluation
We seized opportunities to enhance our facility with minimal expense. Flat screen televisions and decor updates were necessary, but the real challenge was engaging the staff to provide excellent customer service, a cultural shift. Although our hospital leadership had been rounding on inpatient units on day 2 of their stay for years (maternity patients were excluded), we began rounding on these patients daily to get feedback. We systematically identified opportunities for improvement and implemented them at a rapid pace. The opening of an outpatient lactation center, which included pump rental and retail breastfeeding supplies, the afternoon magic cookie moment, and free meal ticket for the patient's significant other were the initiatives implemented on the family unit. Bedside reporting, room readiness, and lateral accountability initiatives were started in the labor and delivery unit. Patient satisfaction scores became a standing agenda item at the obstetrician physician monthly staff meeting as well as tips on how to improve. Each member of our interdisciplinary group led an initiative on a narrow time line. As a result, we have reached our all-time high patient satisfaction score of 91.3, exceeding many units in our facility.
Implications for Nursing Practice
We tell our families that we want to be the best maternity unit in our city. When asked what we could have done better, we now get few suggestions. As a result, our newly engaged staff are passionate about offering our patients a truly memorable and personalized experience. We are proud of our accomplishments but recognize that we must continuously look for ways to improve. As nurses we proved that when we collaborate with our partners in care, everyone wins.