Would you tolerate a restaurant handing you three bills for your dinner? How about if the waiter asked several times if you have allergies?
That is the point that Intermountain Healthcare is trying to make in a new video that highlights the customer experience differences between a doctor’s office and an eatery.
The video, titled “If Restaurants Behaved Like Healthcare,” takes a humorous approach about the restaurant/doctor’s office switch to show the absurdity of the event with the customer’s outrage. Yet, through the humor, the message rings true to how patients should be treated.
“I think it is enlightening for Intermountain to be able to call that out and say look at how we treat our patients in regards to how they might be treated in a restaurant,” said Katy Jo Stevens, patient experience director at Intermountain. “What would that actually look like?”
There are indispensable needs everyone has needed as a patient. While some traits have not changed over time, the same patient/caregiver interaction may not be the same as that of thirty years ago.
“Patients have always needed our compassion and our understanding, and our going beyond just the clinical care. They expect that,” Stevens said. “We said we have to involve patients more. We have to partner with them more. We have to listen to them more.”
Intermountain has been working on improving the ever-changing patient experience for years. Current efforts include inviting patients and families into advisory boards for improvement ideas. Changes from surveys and the advisory boards can present large to small ideas, but effective changes.
One concern they’ve heard is that many patients receive multiple statements from their doctor and insurance company. Intermountain and SelectHealth are working to simplify this by combining these statements in one envelope. This helps patients see what Intermountain billed and SelectHealth paid.
“If the billing part goes wrong it really covers the whole experience,” Stevens said. “From beginning to end, we have to get it right.”