Case Study

How Reducing Hospital Noise Helped a Hospital Increase Patient Satisfaction

“They sent me home from the hospital so I could get some rest,” the patient says matter-of-factly. It’s an old joke, but one with more than a grain of truth: Hospitals can be loud, hectic places. And more than anything else, patients hate noise.

Inspira Health Network – with three medical centers and more than 60 locations in New Jersey – wanted to improve the patient experience, and raise its HCAHPS* score in the process. To help realize what it named its “Quiet Hospital Initiative,” Inspira chose Uniphy Health.

Working with Uniphy Health’s Practice Unite solution, Inspira was able to increase patient satisfaction scores 26% as they relate to noise disturbances.

The main cause of noise in the hospital had been the overhead paging system – the one that reverberates continually with messages such as “Paging Doctor Clark. Doctor Clark, you’re needed in surgery.” Once the Uniphy Health platform was implemented, nurses were able to securely text doctors directly instead of paging them for all to hear

The solution was deployed at Inspira’s Vineland location. Overnight, overhead pages were reduced from 150 a day to just 3! Patient satisfaction scores for quietness increased by 26 percent as compared to the prior twelve months. The solution has subsequently been deployed at Inspira’s other locations and satisfaction scores are rising as expected.

The value of patient satisfaction

Reduced noise is a good in and of itself – and under the Affordable Care Act, patient satisfaction has become even more important. In the emerging world of value-based reimbursement, low patient satisfaction or HCAHPS scores can directly impact the financial health of a healthcare organization.

“Inspira strives to provide a great patient experience,” says Tom Pacek, chief information officer, Inspira Health Network. “It was clear that we needed to reduce the number of overhead pages in our three main facilities. The problem was that our nurses had become dependent on this system to reach physicians. Uniphy Health worked with our IT team to design an innovative solution that has allowed us to all but eliminate overhead paging. This made an immediate impact that is already showing up as increased HCAHPS scores.”

This initiative is just one stage of a longer-term roadmap for Uniphy Health to work with Inspira to help the organization address a range of workflow challenges that will improve the patient experience and facilitate the transition to the new model of Value-based care.”