Boy, did Press Ganey react! Their missive was a tirade against physicians who struggle with satisfying ratings that hospitals are wielding to look good to rating agencies. Press Ganey makes millions off these surveys and any criticism hurts their bottom line. It all started with a Forbes article called “Why Rating Your Doctor Is Bad For Your Health.” They let out the secret that hospitals and their employees (physicians) may just over treat, over prescribe and over test to improve their ‘patient satisfaction’ scores (surprise!). The article mentioned a UC Davis study pointing out that the most satisfied patients spent the most on healthcare and prescription drugs and by the way were more likely to die. As incentive plans and bonuses become more tied to these ‘scores’ the question is: will they lead to worse outcomes and more costly medicine.
Comment: Patient satisfaction is very important in terms of quality of care and communication but the measures that are being used now are worthless. Keep an eye at the ball swinging back to the middle instead of way out. ----