Customer service and patient satisfaction are the targets of a patient loyalty team that was created in 2004 at Memorial Hospital, South Bend, Ind. Using what it calls a “service recovery” approach, the hospital emphasizes (1) listen, (2) emphasize, (3) get the facts, (4) suggest alternatives, (5) agree on action, and (6) follow through as the steps to take to ensure that problems are identified and addressed.

Using the Press-Ganey patient survey data to identify areas of concern, the team set goals that included the following:

The following describes how we applied these initiatives in just 1 area:

The recovery room functions as a surgical intensive care unit for evening and night shifts. The lack of patient privacy, family visitation, close proximity and noise levels created a less than optimal environment for overnight patients.

With an often high census...

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