Clint Allred, a full-time CRNA for Anesthesia Associates of Boise, was the grand prize winner of our recent Patient Experience Week giveaway. He is performing in the top 25% of anesthesia providers nationally. We asked Clint about his best practices for providing exceptional patient care, and we’re excited to share his responses.
Clint completed his nursing education at Weber State University in 2006, and then attended the University of Tennessee for CRNA training. He has been practicing in Boise since 2011.
What best practices do you and the staff you work with follow that you attribute to your positive scores?
Clint Allred: There is a huge push in our profession to unite with our surgeon colleagues and work toward “enhanced recovery after surgery ” protocols. We have known that there are a lot of different ways to manage the anesthetic of a patient, and each patient requires a different anesthetic. The downside to this is the fact that everyone does something different so the continuity of care is sometimes lacking.
To correct this discrepancy, we created a quality committee within our group. This committee was tasked with reviewing literature along with some of the bigger medical institutes, and then sitting down with anesthesia providers from within our group and developing some protocols for the surgeries that we provide routinely. This initiative at least put all of us on the same page to start with. These protocols deal not only with the patient during surgery, but also some interventions before surgery to improve their outcomes. Since installing these protocols, it has been incredible to see the patient, surgeon, and nurse satisfaction elevate. Every anesthetic still needs to be tailored just right, but this has really helped us be proactive in our decision prep.
What is one example of how you improved your relationship with your patients and/or the care you provide?
Clint Allred: It has amazed me how a little bit of effort goes a long way in ensuring comfort for our patients. It can be something as simple as a warm blanket in the cold metal OR, or talking with the patient on their level trying to take time to explain things.
One thing that we have instituted is in our pediatric population. The inhalational anesthetics that we use have a pungent smell. Kids really hate inhaling that odorous gas. So, we bought a bunch of Lip Smacker chapsticks and then bring the mask to the kids and let them pick out a flavor. They paint the inside of the mask with the flavor they selected and it negates that bad smell when the mask is on their face. Little things like these efforts don’t really take a cumbersome amount of time or energy. They just require a little effort and can really improve the relationship with patients.
What is one thing you avoid doing in order to provide a better experience for your patients?
Clint Allred: The biggest thing I have had to make a conscious effort to try and avoid is just going through the motions with my patients preoperatively. I have always taken pride in the quality of anesthesia care that I provide, but I realized when my son had surgery, that I really needed to change my approach to patients before they even have anesthesia. The day of surgery for patients is an overwhelming experience. Even before you get to the surgery and recovery phase, so much is thrown at them. I found that because administering anesthesia is a routine part of my life, I was just doing the bare minimum to educate and put my patients at ease. We would then whisk them away and go provide anesthesia. My experience taught me that taking an extra five minutes to sit down and talk with the patients about what they were going to experience, both for them and their family members, went a long way to easing their anxiety.
How do you best use your SurveyVitals data for your own personal improvement?
Clint Allred: SurveyVitals definitely serves as a reminder to keep those goals and changes, instituted in my own personal practice, in the forefront of my mind daily. Obviously, I won’t make everyone happy all the time. I used to just shrug my shoulders and act like it didn’t matter. However, what I did find is that when I changed my attitudes and practice – all of a sudden the SurveyVitals data meant something to me. It is a way to drive and improve my practice. I still won’t make every patient happy all the time, but I can take pride in my work and raise the bar for my patients.
blake August 6th, 2019 Categories: Anesthesia, Best Practices, Client Spotlight, featured, Patient ExperienceTags: anesthesia, Best Practice, CRNA, Improvement, patient experience, Patient feedback, Patient Satisfaction, Quality
CMS has released the final rule for MIPS 2020. Read the key takeaways here.
If you’re participating in MIPS, you’ll need to know about the changes to the program in 2020. This week, CMS released the Quality Payment Program proposed rule for the next performance year. While their goal is to maintain many of the requirements from the 2019 performance year, there are some updates to the MIPS track. Here are the highlights of the proposed changes.
In 2020, the Quality performance category weight will be reduced from 45 percent to 40 percent. The Cost category weight will increase from 15 percent to 20 percent.
The maximum negative payment adjustment will increase from -7% to -9% in 2020. Positive payment adjustments (not including exceptional performance) will increase from 7% to up to 9%.
The performance threshold–the minimum number of points to avoid a negative payment adjustment–will increase from 30 points in 2019 to 45 points in 2020. The exceptional performance threshold, which determines additional positive payment adjustments, will increase to 80 points in 2020.
A full breakdown of proposed MIPS changes can be found in the table below. CMS is accepting feedback on the proposed rule at regulations.gov through September 27, 2019 with the file code CMS-1715-P.
CMS has also proposed larger changes to the program starting in 2021. Click here to read our summary of their new proposed framework.
For more information on the current MIPS performance year and how SurveyVitals can help you fulfill your requirements, visit our MIPS page or chat with us using the blue chat icon below.
|Policy Area||Current Year 3 (Final Rule CY 2019)||Year 4 (Proposed Rule CY 2020)|
|Performance Category Weights||
|Quality Performance Category||Data Completeness Requirements
CMS seeks measures that are:
There is no formal policy for measure removal, as QCDR measures must be submitted for CMS approval on an annual basis as part of the self-nomination process.
|Data Completeness Requirements
In addition to current requirements:
In addition to current measure removal criteria:
In instances in which multiple, similar QCDR measures exist that warrant approval, we may provisionally approve the individual QCDR measures for 1 year with the condition that QCDRs address certain areas of duplication with other approved QCDR measures in order to be considered for the program in subsequent years. Duplicative QCDR measures would not be approved if QCDRs do not elect to harmonize identified measures as requested by CMS within the allotted timeframe.
QCDR Measure Rejections
|Improvement Activities Performance Category||Definition of Rural Area
Rural area means a ZIP code designated as rural, using the most recent Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Area Health Resource File data set available.
Patient-Centered Medical Home Criteria
MIPS eligible clinicians who successfully participate in the study receive full credit in the Improvement Activities performance category.
Removal of Improvement Activities
Requirement for Improvement Activity Credit for Groups
|Definition of Rural Area
Rural area is proposed to mean a ZIP code designated as rural by the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy (FORHP) using the most recent FORHP Eligible ZIP Code file available.
Patient-Centered Medical Home Criteria
Please review Appendix 2 in the CY 2020 NPRM for a comprehensive look at the changes proposed to the inventory.CMS Study on Factors Associated with Reporting Quality Measures
Study year 2019 (CY 2019) is the last year of the 3-year study, as stated in CY 2019 PFS final rule (83 FR 59776). CMS will not continue the study during the 2020 performance period. Final study results will be shared at a later date.
Removal of Improvement Activities
|Promoting Interoperability Performance Category – Hospital-Based MIPS Eligible Clinicians in Groups||
A group is identified as hospital-based and eligible for reweighting when 100% of the MIPS eligible clinicians in the group meet the definition of a hospital-based MIPS eligible clinician.
A group would be identified as hospital-based and eligible for reweighting if more than 75% of the NPIs in the group meet the definition of a hospital-based individual MIPS eligible clinician.
For non-patient facing groups (more than 75% of the MIPS-eligible clinicians in the group are classified as non-patient facing) we would automatically reweight the Promoting Interoperability performance category.
No change to definition of an individual hospital-based MIPS eligible clinician.
|Promoting Interoperability Performance Category||Objectives and Measures
||Objectives and Measures
|Cost Performance Category||Measures
|Final Score Calculation: Performance Category Reweighting due to Data Integrity Issues||
|Performance Threshold / Additional Performance Threshold / Payment Adjustment||
MIPS eligible clinicians and groups may submit a targeted review request by September 30 following the release of the MIPS payment adjustment factor(s) with performance feedback.
All requests for targeted review would be required to be submitted within 60 days of the release of the MIPS payment adjustment factor(s) with performance feedback.
blake July 30th, 2019 Categories: featured, MIPS Information, Patient ExperienceTags: Improvement, improvement activities, macra, MIPS, patient experience, QCDR, QPP, Quality, quality category, quality payment program
SurveyVitals has enhanced the Location & Provider Details reporting feature to optimize how organization and division-level users capture provider performance.
Location & Provider Details allows organization and division-level users to quickly filter, sort, and rank division and provider performance for the whole organization. This time-saving tool eliminates the work of running custom reports and organizing data.
Based on client feedback, the Location & Provider Details data models have been updated to provide a more granular look at your organization’s data and individual provider performance across locations.
Organization-level users will continue to see all providers and their performance across all divisions where they practice. Division-level users will now see only the providers and their performance data for that particular division. At this level of granularity, the data becomes more pertinent by giving division leaders and clinicians a better sense of how providers interact with patients in different locations and settings.
Location codes and provider NPIs have also been added to the Location & Provider Details data. This information may be useful to match up providers and locations appropriately when downloading raw data.
You can compare a provider’s individual performance across locations by viewing the new provider scorecard. Simply click the name of any provider in the report results to view this data.
The scorecard allows you to see how a provider is performing at one location versus another or overall. For example, the scorecard below shows the provider performing in the 100th percentile for some question groups at certain locations, but in the 1st and 3rd percentile for the same question groups at different locations.
Organization, National, and Specialty benchmarks have been added to provide ease of use for users who want to see a breakdown of their provider or location performance and compare it to the national average and specialty benchmarks. These benchmarks can be added to division-level data as well as the provider scorecards.
Want to know more about Location & Provider Details? Contact our support team today or reach out to us. You can also always drop us a message using the blue chat icon below.
blake July 25th, 2019 Categories: featured, Patient Experience, Product FeaturesTags: benchmarks, Improvement, New Functionality, patient experience, Patient Satisfaction, Portal, reporting
With SurveyVitals’ comprehensive solution, you have access to all of our features without any extra cost. It’s likely you’re using our robust reporting tools, but are you taking full advantage of everything your solution has to offer? Here are five SurveyVitals features you should consider incorporating into your improvement strategy today.
Sentiment analysis was rolled out with SurveyVitals’ recent Report Builder upgrade. Using natural language processing (NLP) and a machine-learning algorithm, sentiment analysis helps you gain a better understanding of your patient comments by providing tonal and sentiment insights.
Text comments can be sorted by sentiment ranking to help you identify the most critical feedback. Sentiment analysis saves you time and drives a higher awareness of your patient experience. See your comment analysis today by using the ‘Report Builder’ in your portal.
You’ve reviewed your data and you know your improvement priorities, but that’s only the first step. Improvement can be overwhelming. Using input from top performers combined with extensive scientific-based research into the patient experience, we created the Improvement Center. Log in to your portal today to access dozens of articles and videos to gain a better understanding of the behaviors that contribute to higher patient satisfaction. Simply click ‘Improvement Center’ in the left navigation of your portal.
Challenge Mode is an excellent way to boost user engagement and drive improvement. Administrators can issue challenges to providers throughout the organization and focus on specific survey questions or question areas. Then watch as participants work to rise to the top of the leaderboard! Scores are tracked throughout the specified challenge timeframe and providers can see how their scores compare to their peers. Start using Challenge Mode today by clicking ‘Challenge’ in the left navigation on your portal.
We know you’re busy, and checking in on the portal can easily get away from you. From instant low-score alerts to bi-weekly kudos emails, our email alerts keep you up to date on your performance. Alerts are designed to provide constant awareness of your strongest areas as well as highlight your improvement opportunities.
Alerts can be enabled by an administrator on the ‘Manage Users’ page.
Did you know you can personalize the survey requests sent to patients for all three modes of contact? Customizing these requests adds a level of familiarity, which may contribute to higher response rates and more accurate feedback.
To customize survey requests, access the options under the ‘Survey Settings’ tab in the left navigation in your portal.
blake July 23rd, 2019 Categories: featured, Patient Experience, Product FeaturesTags: Alerts, Improvement, notifications, patient experience, Portal, Surveys, user management
Expect alert emails to look a bit different when they hit your inboxes this week! Based on client feedback, we’ve updated alerts emails with a sleek new interface and made it easier for clinicians to view trends in performance.
Previous alert emails included the display of a provider’s percentile rank over time for the corresponding question area(s). When looking at short performance periods, a higher beta sometimes caused variability in rank which made it more difficult to track individual performance. The updated email alerts will now show mean score over time, making it easier for providers to gauge both an increase or decrease in scores over the last 90 days.
When email alerts are enabled, providers receive instant email notifications including the question, score, mean versus time, best practices, and links to other improvement resources (example image above).
If you aren’t receiving email alerts, talk to your administrator today about enabling them. Low score alerts help drive improvement by providing continuous, instant awareness of patient concerns. Simply turning on these alerts has been proven to drive improvement with no additional coaching.
Have questions about alerts and notifications, or need help enabling them? Contact us using the blue chat icon below!
blake June 20th, 2019 Categories: featured, Patient Experience, Product FeaturesTags: Alerts, Improvement, notifications, patient experience, Patient feedback, Patient Satisfaction
April 22-26 was Patient Experience Week and to celebrate, we asked our clients to share what drives them to provide memorable patient care. Those who responded were eligible to win an Amazon gift card. We’re excited to announce the winners of the giveaway and to share what motivates and inspires them to provide an exceptional patient experience!
We asked: It's Patient Experience Week! Tell us what inspires you to work every day to provide amazing care to your patients.
Grand Prize Winner: Clint Allred, CRNA, Anesthesia Associates of Boise
“I work at a fairly average sized hospital with ten operating rooms in which we do all kinds of surgeries and care for all types of patients. It is a job that is always moving and often requires stretching of one’s abilities clinically and also professionally within our anesthesia group. Sometimes amidst the day to day providing of anesthesia, combined with the complexity of hospital bureaucracy, the patient and their experience can sometimes be forgotten. At some point in all of our careers, we got into the medical field because of our desire to care for other people. For some that motivation is fast forgotten and never found again. For me growing up, it was my younger brother who instilled this desire in me. He had serious handicaps and spent a lot of his life in and out of hospitals. Our experience was so dependent on those caring for him, for better or worse, those providers served as the rudder for our interactions with healthcare. I wanted to have a strong and helpful influence so that others could have their burden lightened.
Recently, my eight year old son had his tonsils removed. This is a very routine case, millions are done each year, and I provide the anesthesia for 6-8 of these types of cases at least once a week in our practice. The anesthetic for this case has become routine and mundane for me personally. All of a sudden I was thrust onto the other side of the experience. There my son laid on the gurney getting prepped for surgery. I saw him run the gamut of emotions; fear, anxiety, apprehension, concern...etc. All of a sudden those emotions of why I went into medicine came flooding back. I realized that the way I interacted with patients would leave a lasting impact on them. Clinically I have always provided my best care and effort, but I saw through my boy's eyes that I could do more and be more as a clinician. My son received incredible care and has since healed from his physical incisions, but the experience he had prior to surgery has had a far greater impact.
It is this message that inspires me to provide amazing care to my patients. No matter how routine or regular a procedure is to me, I remember that experience and hold strong to the fact that it is not routine for the patient on the stretcher.”
Alexis Haney, RN, USAP
“To be a caring voice to a person who didn't wake up wanting to be sick or have surgery. Everyday, I partner with SurveyVitals because in the background, almost every patient is given a chance to have a voice. I am that individual that gets to read their thoughts, their frustrations, their fears. I am able to offer them a chance to make a difference when they are in a position where they feel they have little control. When a patient requests to be called back... I can be the caring voice on the other end and I can convey to them I really do care, perhaps that will make them feel a little better and perhaps I can make a change or help their concern because USAP cares and wants to be better and that why I am inspired to provide amazing care and support to patients.”
Tina Eide, MD, Matrix Anesthesia
“Anesthesia is a tricky job, because everything is fine until it’s really not fine. It requires constant vigilance and care, even when I show up feeling less than 100%. On these days, I look to my patients for energy and strength, because I know they are relying on me for the same. I love learning about their careers, seeing pictures of their children and pets, hearing their songs they belt out (people love singing to me!), and listening to their stories that brought them to surgery. I’ve met musicians, politicians, hospital administrators, teachers, circus performers, professional athletes, prima ballerinas, and so very many people who have interesting stories. Because we often cannot share details of our patients with our families or friends, I hold these private encounters with special regard.”
Rhina Romera, Envision Healthcare
“Working in healthcare makes a difference in people's lives. Caring for people and helping others lead healthy lives is satisfying and important. I love humankind and it is gratifying to me to make a positive impact not just on patients but everyone involved. No one likes to be ill, so it is very important to me that patients feel that they are treated with compassion and respect.”
Sarah Russell, FNP, Wellspring Health Services
“The one thing that inspires me the most to provide excellent care is when patients follow up and start feeling so much better! I have also had patients tell me that for the first time they felt like a provider actually listened to them and cared about their story and their health. Oftentimes a patient's story will give the clues to their disease processes and struggles and be the beginning of the answer in leading them back to health. Without listening to the patient, it is often a matter of just cold medicine treatment that can leave the patient sicker rather than better.”
Anne LeBlanc, USAP
“For us providers, our days can often seem routine. Remembering that for our patients, surgery is often a very scary and powerless position to be in. Connecting with the patient and family in the preoperative area and forming a trustworthy bond is one of the most inspiring and valuable parts of our job. Being able to relieve some of that anxiety and comfort them in their time of fear is incredibly rewarding and inspiring for me.”
Thank you to all of our clients who took the time to share their stories! We admire your dedication to the patient experience.
blake May 23rd, 2019 Categories: Anesthesia, Best Practices, Client Spotlight, Outpatient Practice, Patient ExperienceTags: best practices, Improvement, Our Clients, patient experience, Patient feedback, Patient Satisfaction
SurveyVitals is excited to announce the launch of the Improvement Center in our client portal!
Our reporting, alerts, and dashboards have given our clients the real-time data needed to identify trends and work toward improving the patient experience. The Improvement Center takes the solution to the next level with a wealth of educational videos and articles to aid providers in targeting improvement where it is needed most.
To get started using the Improvement Center, login to your portal and click ‘Improvement Center’ in the left navigation. Browse general resources on the Improvement Center homepage, or view resources by survey. Survey-specific content is broken down by question group.
Not sure where to start? Use the Report Builder to analyze your data and comments and identify improvement opportunities. Then utilize the resources in the Improvement Center to gain a better understanding of what may help your patients in those areas.
SurveyVitals created the Improvement Center using input from top performers combined with extensive scientific-based research into the patient experience. Check back often for new content as our improvement resources evolve and grow with your solution.
blake May 6th, 2019 Categories: Anesthesia, featured, Outpatient Practice, Patient Experience, Product FeaturesTags: anesthesia, Best Practice, Improvement, New Feature, outpatient, patient experience, Patient Satisfaction
The patient experience is improving because of your dedication. Here are some remarkable metrics you were a part of in 2018.
Over 2 million surveys were completed last year, providing feedback on more than 31 million questions and bringing in over 2 million comments. Patient comments were overwhelmingly positive–there were 57 positive words for every one negative word!
Patients aged 64-75 years old were the best respondents, with the highest response rates for email, SMS, and overall. The most satisfied patients were males 25-34 years old for APSQ, and females 65-74 years old for SPSQ.
Our clients logged in over 124,000 times last year and received 138,000 low score alerts and 18,000 contact requests. This helped drive improvement in every area of care, but the most improved areas were Privacy Respected for APSQ and Communication for SPSQ.
Thank you for working with SurveyVitals to help your patients and your organization. We look forward to helping you continue to meet your patient experience goals in 2019!
blake January 8th, 2019 Categories: Anesthesia, featured, Outpatient Practice, Patient ExperienceTags: Improvement, notifications, patient experience, Patient feedback, Portal, Response Rates, Surveys
The redesigned MOCA 2.0 (Maintenance of Certification in Anesthesiology) allows anesthesia diplomates to complete a variety of new activities to meet the Part 4 Quality Improvement requirement. Diplomates are required to earn a minimum of 50 points during their ten-year MOCA 2.0 cycle by choosing and completing quality improvement activities most relevant to their practice.Where does SurveyVitals come in?
You may be able to use the SurveyVitals solution to fulfill the requirement by completing an improvement plan based on A) 360 professional reviews, or B) patient experience of care surveys. The point value for this activity is 1 point per hour spent on the activity, for a total of up to 25 points.
SurveyVitals’ Anesthesia 360° solution offers surveys for patients, practitioners, administrators, surgeons, and peers to give you a comprehensive look at patient and professional satisfaction.
Don’t know where to start? Your survey dashboard provides a detailed visual of areas scoring the lowest and receiving the most low-score alerts, allowing for quick identification of improvement opportunities. SurveyVitals’ robust reporting options allow you to easily track and measure improvement in these areas over time based on near real-time patient feedback.How can I attest to meeting this requirement?
Diplomates must attest to the activity on the American Board of Anesthesiology (ABA) website using the ABA-approved template found here. Your SurveyVitals data can be used to summarize both the Data Summary and the Change in Practice.
More information about the MOCA 2.0 Part 4 requirement can be found on the ABA website.
blake June 1st, 2018 Categories: Anesthesia, Product FeaturesTags: anesthesia, anesthesiologist, CRNA, diplomates, Improvement, maintenance of certification anesthesia, MOCA, Quality
Over 80% of patients turn to Google when looking for a new healthcare provider. SurveyVitals’ online reputation tools have helped boost client Google reviews by 281%. While increasing your number of online reviews is essential for attracting new patients, it’s equally important to respond to these reviews appropriately. Patients are certainly reading online reviews, but […]
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Better understand patient concerns with our low-score survey logic, now included on our Standard Patient Satisfaction Questionnaire (SPSQ). When patients select a score of a ‘1’ or ‘2’ on the five-point Likert scale for any standard survey question, they will be prompted to leave a comment describing their experience in that area. The long-term use […]
Nearly 90 percent of patients look to online reviews when choosing a physician, so increasing a positive presence online is more important than ever. SurveyVitals’ Public Review feature helped healthcare providers and organizations proactively build their online reputation and improve their search rank in 2019. The feature drives verified patients to leave public reviews about […]