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National Report on Patient Perspectives of Hospital Care Released Today

Examines 2.7 million patients treated at nearly 2,000 hospitals nationwide

in 2007

SOUTH BEND, Ind., March 18 /PRNewswire/ -- Press Ganey Associates, Inc., the health care industry's leading provider of improvement services, released today its 2008 Hospital Pulse Report: Patient Perspectives on American Health Care. The report examines patient satisfaction across the country, trends in overall patient perceptions, and variations based on metropolitan areas, services provided within the hospital, hospital size, and patient age.

The Hospital Pulse Report examines the experiences of more than 2.7 million patients treated at nearly 2,000 hospitals nationwide in 2007, and provides a comprehensive indicator of the perceived quality of hospital care, including:

-- Response to concerns/complaints, addressing emotional needs, and

including patients in treatment decisions are the top three

opportunities for hospitals to improve.

-- Patients ages 65-79 were the most satisfied age group with patients

35-49 being the least satisfied;

-- Obstetrics/Gynecology patients were the most satisfied among the major

specialties, followed by Intensive Care and Cardiology/Coronary.

-- Wichita, Kan., is the metro area with highest patient satisfaction,

followed by Columbia, S.C., Oklahoma City, Okla., Indianapolis, Ind.,

and Miami, Fla.

"Most hospitals have for some time been focusing on their patients' perceptions because it is the right thing to do," says Dr. Melvin Hall, president and chief executive officer of Press Ganey. "In today's health care landscape, patient-centered care is a business imperative for hospitals." Those who continually improve the patient experience know that the benefits have a direct impact on the bottom line."

Patients will soon have a new tool for evaluating quality of care when the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) releases its public report of patient perspectives later this month. These publicly-reported hospital results are expected to increase transparency so consumers can make more informed decisions about their care. This new development makes it imperative for hospitals to focus on continuous improvement to differentiate themselves in a competitive marketplace.

"The key for hospitals rests not in the publicly-reported data itself, but in continuous improvement efforts," said Dr. Deirdre Mylod, Press Ganey's vice president of public policy. "Those hospitals who are seeing the greatest results in this new initiative are the ones that are utilizing quality improvement data and improvement initiatives to drive their publicly reported results."

The 2008 Hospital Pulse Report: Patient Perspectives on American Health Care is available at Commentary from Dr. Hall and Dr. Mylod is available upon request.

Press Ganey Associates, Inc.

For more than twenty years, Press Ganey has been committed to providing insight that allows health care organizations to improve the quality of care they provide while improving their bottom-line results. The company offers the largest comparative customer feedback databases, actionable data, solution resources, and unparalleled consulting and customer service. Press Ganey currently partners with more than 7,000 health care facilities -- including over 40% of U.S. hospitals -- to measure and improve the quality of their care.

SOURCE Press Ganey Associates, Inc.
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

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