Healthcare Environmental Services: A Clean, Quiet Boost for HCAHPS Scores
Anyone who works in a healthcare environmental services (EVS) department—sometimes called healthcare housekeeping services or hospital cleaning services—knows what is at stake when it comes to HCAHPS scores. Accounting for nearly 30 percent of a hospital’s total performance score, HCAHPS scores measure patient satisfaction based on surveys. Potential patients often reference these scores to choose a hospital, and the scores are directly tied to CMS payouts.
Two of the patient survey questions deal directly with areas connected with EVS for hospitals: cleanliness and quietness. Since HCAHPS scores were introduced in 2008, hospital EVS teams have looked for innovative ways to contribute to both. Below are a few suggestions that could help boost your hospital’s facility’s cleanliness, quietness, and HCAHPS ranking.
Empathy training. Probably the No. 1 most effective action hospital EVS departments can do to raise HCAHPS scores is to provide all workers with empathy training. Often, EVS workers spend more time in a patient’s room than doctors or nurses. Many patients find EVS workers approachable and will confide in them. If EVS workers show empathy, it can help alleviate patients’ concerns about their hospital stay. Empathetic interactions leave patients with a more favorable impression of their overall hospital experience and can boost HCAHPS scores.
Reminders. Some hospitals provide workers with “tent” cards to place on the tray table or in the restroom. As they are used in many hotels, the cards are left to let patients know EVS thoroughly cleaned the room prior to their arrival. This can provide patients with an extra level of confidence that EVS is working hard to prevent the spread of infection.
Follow up. Many EVS teams keep a list of patients who had a complaint regarding the cleanliness of their room. They then make a point of stopping in daily to be sure everything is satisfactory—and remains that way. People appreciate when their concerns are taken seriously, and the extra attention can help turn a complaint into a positive patient experience.
QA supervisor Many hospital EVS teams have a single supervisor in charge of quality assurance (QA). The QA supervisor randomly checks out a certain number of rooms per shift to ensure workers uphold the facility’s cleaning quality standards.
Outside input. Many hospital cleaning services encourage and provide EVS workers with an opportunity to take educational courses and attend webinars, seminars, and other events. At these gatherings, EVS workers can learn from and share ideas with other hospital EVS departments regarding improving patient satisfaction.
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Keep It Quiet
Equipment purchases. Most hospitals test equipment before purchasing it. Many even use a noise meter to determine which models are the quietest to operate.
Maintenance. Keeping equipment in good repair helps reduce noise levels. EVS should repair or replace broken belts, squeaky cart wheels, and similar noisy malfunctioning equipment.
Quiet time. Some healthcare facilities only allow equipment such as high-speed buffers and power scrubbers to be used during daytime hours. Other hospitals have designated quiet hours during which louder equipment, including vacuums and floor machines, may not be operated.
Healthcare Environmental Services Near Me
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Find out more about healthcare housekeeping services opportunities with Servicon in the California area at servicon.com/careers.
We help produce higher HCAHPS scores, lower HAIs, and faster throughput, which translates into more budget dollars to spend on your business of saving lives.
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