375 - Star Family Initiative. Improving Patient Satisfaction
Description: Clinical Issue - The patient satisfaction score of Likelihood to Recommend Our Facility has historically trended slightly below our goal of 89.8 for surgical services. Current research suggests a direct correlation that improving communication would improve the Likelihood to Recommend our Facility scores. The Star Family Initiative was created to improve communication during the entire surgical process. The term Star Family was chosen to have a neutral connotation to communicate to staff without raising awareness to our patients and families. Description of Team – Virtua Voorhees surgical services shared governance council members are from preadmission testing (PAT), surgical processing area (SPA), and the operating room (OR). Preparation and Planning –This project began with the formation of a team from PAT, SPA, and the OR. The team researched the best evidence-based practices then identified methods to improve communication in all phases of care. Example criteria for Star Family designation were defined. Education regarding the Star Family Initiative went out to all members of surgical services, including PAT, SPA, OR, waiting room personnel, and other surgical service departments. Any employee can designate a Star Family for a variety of reasons. Assessment – Families that show signs of high emotional-acuity may need more interventions to help alleviate fear or worries. Communication tools were developed to help the patient and their family transition through the surgical services process. Implementation – Once identified, the patient’s chart will have a star sticker placed on the SPA/OR and OR/PACU handoff sheet. Communication of Star Family designation will occur during SPA to OR handoff. The designated family member will be asked the preferred method for updates. (e.g., phone call, text, face to face communication). The PAT or SPA nurse initiates the Notify Family function in EPIC to allow for texting updates. This function sends a text message as the patient moves throughout the units within surgical services (e.g., from SPA to OR to PACU). The OR staff will confirm the contact information of the family member and their preferred method of communication. Communication between OR staff and the patient’s family may be from the charge nurse, circulating nurse, Nurse Director, assistant nurse manager, educator, or any other available staff member. During OR/PACU handoff, STAR Family status will be communicated to allow PACU staff to maintain communication. Outcomes - Patient satisfaction scores showed a marked improvement after the implementation of our project. Our modification in practice supports the evidence that improved communication has a direct correlation to our improved patient satisfaction scores. Implications for Perioperative Nursing – Modifying and contouring such processes can be applied to other surgical services departments.
Co-Authors: David Meyer, Jennifer Sulzner, Kimberly Laramee, Darlene Berghaier, Elisabeth Digneo