Monday, April 2, 2012

Missouri Satisfaction Surveys Challenge Perceptions

When it comes to nursing home administration, we like the analogy of Marcia Flesner. She likened running a nursing home to running a small community. Ms. Flesner, a clinical educator at the University of Missouri’s Sinclair School of Nursing, was commenting on a resident and family satisfaction survey, which found that nearly 90 percent of Missouri nursing home residents and their family members are satisfied with the residents’ long-term care facilities. The study was funded by the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services regarding resident and family satisfaction in nursing homes.

If the analogy was carried further, one could say that a nursing home satisfaction survey is like “voting” in a small community – people vote based on bread and butter issues like services, environment, planning, caring, compassionate staff, etc. “The findings paint a positive picture that contradicts previous perceptions,” said Sinclair’s Professor Marilyn Rantz.

According to the study, 86 percent of residents and families rated their overall satisfaction as “excellent” or “good” and nearly 90 percent would recommend the skilled nursing care facility to others. In addition, over 80 percent of those surveyed rated their or their loved ones’ quality of life, quality of care and quality of service as “excellent” or” good.”

"These are great results,” said Jon Dolan, Executive Director of the Missouri Health Care Association. "Providers and frontline staff have been working hard to improve satisfaction under the current regulatory and reimbursement climate," Dolan observed.

Reaching and sustaining a quality, highly satisfying environment takes dedication, determination, and commitment. To advance the profession, AHCA/NCAL recently launched a quality initiative challenging members to improve customer satisfaction, reduce rehospitalizations and lower off-label use of antipsychotics. For more information, visit AHCA/NCAL’s Quality Initiative website.

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