Home Care Agencies Responding To Patients' Needs

Armen Hareyan's picture
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Technological advances are fueling growth in the home health care industry. Home care agencies are responding to this growth by focusing on patient needs. On the whole, agencies receive high patient ratings, but opportunities exist -- particularly in the home care office's ability to deal with patient requests and complaints.

These national findings were released today in the 2007 Home Care Pulse Report: Patient Perspectives on American Healthcare by Press Ganey Associates, Inc., the health care industry's leading provider of measurement and improvement services.

The report examines the experiences of more than 282,000 patients receiving care from home health organizations and medical equipment providers across the country. Key findings in the report include:

-- Medicare patients are the most satisfied with home health care services while self-pay patients are least satisfied.

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-- Patient satisfaction decreases significantly after the first 10 months of receiving care.

-- Satisfaction decreases significantly when patients use equipment for more than 21 weeks.

-- Patients are most satisfied early in the day and become less satisfied as the day goes on.

Home health care patients value open communication and responsiveness. Responding to concerns with compassion and sensitivity is key to meeting the needs of this population.

"As technology continues to enhance the ability to provide health care across different settings, home care will become an increasingly prevalent way of meeting patients' needs," says Dr. Melvin Hall, president and chief executive officer of Press Ganey. "To sustain this growth and maintain a competitive advantage, agencies must listen and respond to patients in order to improve the quality of care."

Source: Press Ganey Associates, Inc.

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