Exploring how we help patients give feedback

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NHS Tayside’s care experience group has been working with volunteers and public partners around knowledge and understanding of how patients can share feedback.

About half of patients responding to the biannual national hospital care experience survey state they don’t know how to provide feedback on their care experience.

The care experience group has been exploring how to best inform staff and patients on the different ways in which they can share their care experiences.

During January, the group interviewed staff and patients to identify recommendations on how we can improve our information to patients, families and healthcare workers.

Patient feedback   

83% of patient and family responses indicated they had not been informed on how they could provide feedback.

People’s ability to engage with information is varied so different messages and mediums of providing information are needed. In particular, information needs to be accessible to those whose first language is not English, those who have visual impairment or other communication difficulties, children and those who find it difficult to understand the written word.

People might want information at different times, before and during their stay, and staff need to tailor that to what the person needs and wants. It was suggested that there should be a combination of methods such as posters, leaflets, feedback forms, verbal information, and also to share information at discharge or admission.

Staff feedback

Of the healthcare workers that had confidence to describe the various ways in which feedback could be provided, only 38% of healthcare indicated they were fully confident and comfortable with this.  Staff said that they would benefit from gaining more awareness, knowledge and understanding of the methods and the processes, with many not currently knowing where to find relevant information.

In some areas, staff did not routinely raise awareness or promote patient feedback with patients and families.

Early recommendations  

  • Raise awareness and build confidence among healthcare workers
  • Continue to create an open culture to promote, receive and share feedback
  • Work in partnership with a wide variety of people of all abilities to develop information, resources and feedback methods to enable easy access for all

What next?

These recommendations and the detailed findings will be shared with the Care Experience Feedback group and integrated into their existing work plan. Anyone who is interested in supporting this work can note their interest to Dr Debbie Baldie at dbaldie@nhs.net or Heather Robb at heather.robb@nhs.net

The group would like to thank everyone that contributed to this work. Their time, insights and suggestions have been invaluable.

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