People are staying conscious about their health, and in case of differences in their body condition, they prefer to seek help in healthcare organizations. Workers in this industry have a great responsibility as they help others to cope with severe health issues and maintain a healthy lifestyle. Consequently, strong attention is paid to the patient’s feelings and their satisfaction with services to ensure further improvement of this sphere of life. According to Afrashtehfar et al. (2020), people’s feedbacks help to improve the quality of healthcare, time of service, and experience of doctors or nurses. This aspect should not be underestimated to ensure the competitiveness and growth of the specific medical center.
Vila Health: Patient Flow has provided a real email from the Independent Medical Center’s staff in which they describe their current problem of the decreasing percentage of satisfaction. Even though this problem is massive, the company has several competitive advantages like efficient treatment outcomes and environmental care. Moreover, the level of satisfaction did not drop significantly, and the restoration process might not require a lot of financial resources. The fall is graduate, and it is an advantage as with the improvement of communication and waiting time, the general patients’ satisfaction may increase.
The organization is initiative, but they require the help of professionals to make the systems smooth and beneficial for patients and their families. One of the key strategies is to control how people move from one department to another and how they are being supported. For instance, they follow patients from the operations room to the discharge specialist. This strategy aims to ensure that patients stay within the control of professionals and that their medical records are not lost between other documents.
Satisfaction is crucial for this medical organization as workers understand that they are responsible for many human lives, and their professionalism increases when they receive positive patient feedback. The business’s strategy is to increase awareness, provide high-quality services and generate more profit which is also crucial for independent companies. The increase in satisfaction can bring more money and allow experts to conduct research in different fields to ensure the future well-being of their clients.
Declining Satisfaction as a Performance Improvement Initiative
The Independent Medical Center staff constantly mentions that patient satisfaction is the key aspect that should be improved, and they are already applying several strategies to improve the situation. The business leaders are aware of the potential boost in development when the key problem is solved. Consequently, they are trying to pay attention to the details, which causes a decline in the level of satisfaction. The causes of the decreasing trend could be various and different. Based on the Vila Health case, it can be seen that potential reasons for the decline can be a lack of professional communication between workers, patients, and families. The organization has 65% efficiency in this area, and the percentage continues to drop. Moreover, the waiting time of 49% of effectiveness might cause a general decrease in patients’ satisfaction. Nevertheless, the medical organization is an initiative, and they are investing a lot of resources into the external parties to help them solve the problem. They also have innovative ideas like monthly control of the percentage change and recording drawbacks and successes.
The Fishbone diagram helps to see the key problem that causes the organization to the decreasing trend in patient satisfaction. For instance, by following the communication process between workers and clients, it can be seen that the staff does not have enough training to make people calm and ensure that they receive help in the near future. Moreover, the problem can be caused due to the poor experience of the director of operations, who cannot manage workers and follow their performance. Moreover, time-management problems and long waiting-time causes issue in the general methods of the company, and the experience of patients becomes negative. The overflow of patients who need to take specific tests makes operations insignificant and increases the tension among clients and demotivation of workers.
To organize a subtopic of the whole fishbone diagram, it is important to analyze all conversations between assistants, their colleagues, and patients. When the problems in different medical center operations are mentioned, the consequences can be defined. For example, due to a shortage of ambulances, patients must get to the center to receive help. However, some machines like EGK are actively used during the day, and not all patients can be tested. This issue increases irritation and the level of dissatisfaction.
Purpose of a Performance Improvement Team
Performance Improvement Team helps many businesses in different spheres of human life to increase efficiency in all departments. The concept proposes a variety of different strategies which can be adjusted to the key problems of organizations (Shortell et al., 2018). The members of the PIMs in the healthcare industry are trained to conduct accurate analyses of the positive and negative aspects of the business. When the problems are identified, the leaders of the external support start producing schedules for planned operations and testing processes, educating staff, and communicating with patients. In the case of Vila Health, all these aspects should be controlled and improved to increase satisfaction levels.
Cooperation with workers is important as it helps study the organization’s insights. Consequently, based on the findings of Abdallah (2020), the objectives of medical centers can be achieved with the help of professionals in the industry. For instance, surgeons and anesthetists have direct communication with patients and can explain the key need of their clients. Physicians can also help Performance Improvement Team as they can define many health problems in the early stages during the first visit. Working with the physician can identify the core aspect of the issue development.
The performance Improvement Team should also pay attention to the stakeholders who benefit from the business’s success. Patients, workers, owners, and investors are the main stakeholder of the Vila Health organization. Parties participating in the development of the independent medical center are interested in their advantage. Therefore, while patients expect high-quality medical assistance, workers want to expand their experience and stay motivated (Martinelli, 2020). Moreover, the company is not financed by the government, and the performance improvement team should also evaluate the interests of the investors.
Lack of experience, training, and future aims causes performance to decrease in the medical sphere. The set of specific goals inspires people to complete their tasks and make changes in the healthcare industry. Consequently, a lean methodology was created, which optimizes work and motivates employees (Cohen, 2018). The concept of lean methodology might not apply to several businesses which are asking for help during their bankruptcy period. The projects that are constantly monitoring their performance and changes in customers’ satisfaction can benefit from the lean methodology as it requires to make deeper analyses thought out the implementation of changes. Also, start-up projects can use the methodology efficiently when they do not have much money and have insignificant experience in budgeting.
The data-driven improvement cycle is the process that is included in the lean methodology and provides the services that increase the productivity of a particular business. According to Selim (2019), there are five key aspects of the concept, which are known as define, measure, analyze, improve, and control. To produce a better plan for the business support, it is important to find out the key problem and understand the issue’s significance on the general performance. Moreover, produce possible solutions, execute them, and strictly follow the changes.
Vila Health: Patient Flow follows several parts of the DMAIC cycle, but some aspects are not understood correctly. It is seen that the company is suffering from decreasing patients’ satisfaction, and the decrease in percentage is clearly presented. However, the company is struggling to analyze the causes of the problem and apply solutions that might change the situation for the better. More data from patients should be collected as the information provided by workers does not reveal the real feedback from patients and their communication with doctors or receptionists. The clients of the medical center can take short surveys or leave feedback on the official website to help the Performance Improvement Team understand the cause of the percentage decrease in the level of satisfaction.
The basic causes of the issue are the inability to receive enough training and the poor scheduling process. The overflow of patients assigned for specific testing procedures like EKG disappoints people in the private provision of medical services. Specialists shortage is also a significant problem that increases the waiting time and decreases patients’ satisfaction. Even insignificant problems like the client’s passive tension decrease workers’ motivation and develop further issues that have a massive influence on the general performance of the healthcare center.
The possible recommendations that the Performance Improvement Team can offer are to stay more connected to customers and allow them to give direct feedback about the available services. Furthermore, the company’s managers should reduce the burden on receptionists who control the performance of all center departments. This strategy might help predict staff shortages and warn patients about changes. Even if the company experience problems with the supply chain or workers’ employment, clients should stay updated and have enough time to find another medical organization that can assist on time.
In conclusion, the change in internal communication between workers and potential clients should stay efficient as people usually build their trust based on the tone of the conversation. Structured and clear message delivery can avoid patients’ dissatisfaction and ensure that they are always welcomed for other services available at the independent medical center. Continuous ignorance of the. importance of communication can influence other recommendations and lead the company to fail in the process of increasing the level of satisfaction.
Abdallah, A. A. (2020). Healthcare engineering: A lean management approach. Journal of Healthcare Engineering.
Afrashtehfar, K. I., Assery, M. K. A., & Bryant, S. R. (2020). Patient satisfaction in medicine and dentistry. International Journal of Dentistry.
Cohen, R. I. (2018). Lean methodology in health care. CHEST, 154(6), 1448-1454.
Martinelli, L. A. (2020). The ethical accountability of organizational leadership to communities of stakeholders in healthcare. Duquesne University ProQuest Dissertation Publishing, 1-372. Web.
Selim, A. (2019). Integrating DMAIC approach of Lean Six Sigma and theory of constraints toward quality improvement in healthcare. Reviews on Environmental Health.
Shortell, S. M., Blodgett, J. C., & Rundall, T. G. (2018). Use of lean and related transformational performance improvement systems in hospitals in the United States: Results from a national survey. The Joint Commission Journal on Quality and Patient Safety, 44(10), 574-583.