Patient feedback through the service delivery assessment, a centralized telephone survey program, provides Air Force clinics with direct, rapid and relevant feedback vital to national security, Air Force Medical Service officials said.
“Improving the health of Airmen and their families is our mission and patient feedback is vital to our efforts to continuously improve,” said Lt. Gen. (Dr.) Charles B. Green, the Air Force Surgeon General.
Since 2003, Air Force Medical Service officials have relied on SDA to assess and improve upon the patient experience at all Air Force clinics. Survey questions are customized by each facility. The results are disseminated in a weekly report to the facility’s staff and AFMS leadership.
The weekly report allows Air Force clinics to quickly take corrective action in areas where there are shortcomings or improvement needs, officials said. It also helps Air Force clinics understand what is working well at their facility, promote and perfect best practices, and share successes with other facilities through lessons learned.
The reports have shown that Air Force health care providers and staff members are succeeding in this mission by upholding the highest standards of care and delivering that care with courtesy, respect and dignity to every patient.
The way SDA works is simple, officials said.
A trained caller contacts the patient by phone within 48 hours after the patient’s visit to an Air Force clinic. The interviews typically last less than five minutes, and as with all matters related to a patient’s health, complete patient privacy is maintained.
Questions focus on the patient’s observations about the facility and the patient’s health care providers, including ease of setting the appointment, check-in and wait time, staff courtesy and attention, overall satisfaction with the facility, and overall satisfaction with the provider.
Through programs like SDA, AFMS officials can continue to build on successes, and fulfill their pledge to maintain a healthy, steady and ready fighting force.