The Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS) survey is a nationally administered, standardized survey of patients’ perspectives on hospital care.The survey asks for the patient’s perspective on eight key topics: communication with doctors, communication with nurses, responsiveness of hospital staff, pain management, communication about medicines, discharge information, cleanliness of the hospital environment and quietness of the hospital environment.
According to Centers for Medical & Medicaid Services (CMS) which developed the survey, the HCAHPS is the first standardized survey of its kind. The data from the surveys can be used to make a meaningful comparison among hospitals. The results from the survey are publicly available and can be found at the HCAHPS website.
For the patients and family members, the HCAPHS survey results indicate how hospitals scored among randomly selected patients after they left the hospital. For hospitals, the HCAHPS survey results offer opportunities for improvement. Analyzed results reflect types of patients who, generally, score hospitals high and low. Future federal funding for a specific hospital is based on each hospital’s scores compared to a baseline.
By analyzing past patients’ scores, hospitals can predict how incoming patients will score them. This knowledge can help hospitals create interventions that improve patient satisfaction as well as optimally allocate resources.