Ambulatory sites across the Mount Sinai Health System achieved significant improvement in patient experience in 2020. “With a range of initiatives, we are moving the needle on employee and patient experience, by creating a culture of purpose over task, where team members are bringing their best selves to work every day, feeling connected to their work, and putting the patients at the center of everything they do,” says Kelly Cassano, DO, Chief Executive Officer of the Mount Sinai Doctors Faculty Practice, Dean for Clinical Affairs, and Senior Vice President for Ambulatory Operations.
As measured by Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ Clinician and Group Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CGCAHPS) patient experience survey, more than 80 percent of practices and clinics across the system met one or more of the 2020 goals in Recommend this Provider Office, Provider Communication, or Teamwork. Across all of Ambulatory Services, Provider Rating 0-10 increased by 2 percent top box score and 10 percentile ranks nationally. Last year, Mount Sinai also celebrated the achievement of 52 providers who ranked in the top one percent nationally in provider communication.
Mount Sinai practices and clinics have shown unprecedented agility, teamwork, and creativity in the rapid adoption of telemedicine services. This critical, large-scale transition to virtual care delivery created an urgent need to hear the patient voice. To meet that need, Ambulatory Care Services and the Office of Patient Experience co-designed and implemented a Telemedicine patient experience eSurvey across 300 practices. More than 20,000 responses were recorded in 2020 since its launch in April 2020.
Critical to the success of the telemedicine survey, thousands of responses were made accessible to providers across the organization in a timely and intuitive way, says Laryssa Boyko, MPH, Patient Experience Operations Coordinator. The patient voices captured on these surveys led to important findings, for example revealing unequal access to care for patients with language barriers and disabilities. To ensure that the growth of telemedicine does not exacerbate disparities in care, Ambulatory partnered with the Office of Patient Experience and engaged LanguageLine Solutions to provide interpretation services on different telehealth platforms. Click here to learn more about this important effort to provide equitable care in telehealth.
Many of these significant improvements have been driven through the Ambulatory-wide Commitment to Caring (C2C) program. “Commitment to Caring for patients, colleagues, and ourselves is a homegrown program to set service standards and behaviors to create a patient-centric culture and standard practice across all Ambulatory settings,” says Anne Dickerson, Vice President Administration and Planning, Mount Sinai Doctors Faculty Practice. Hundreds of staff offered input into the C2C design, such as ambulatory leadership, administration, practice managers, providers, Talent Development & Learning, the Office of Patient Experience, the Access Center, and Billing colleagues.
The C2C program also has a special focus on provider communication. The C2C Provider Communication Training seeks to enhance the quality of patient-provider interactions. It was kept online during the crisis, by creatively adapting to the virtual setting.
The Cullman Family Awards
In 2020, the Office of Patient Experience was delighted to recognize the recipients of the 2020 Cullman Family Award for Excellence in Physician Communication. For the past five years, this award has honored Mount Sinai physicians and advanced practice providers who demonstrate exceptional communication in clinical practice. Recipients of the 2020 award were ranked in the top one percent nationally in provider communication for 2019 as measured by CGCAHPS survey.
Awardees were honored at an October virtual ceremony. Seventeen out of these 52 providers—or 33 percent—are a prior year’s recipients and four of these providers have won three or more consecutive years.
“Please join us in recognizing not only these outstanding providers, but the many Ambulatory teams, leadership, practice managers, and surrounding partners in the achievements of 2020,” says Erica Rubinstein, MS, LCSW, CPXP, Vice President, Service Excellence and Patient Experience. “We’d also like to especially congratulate Anne Dickerson, supported by Management Analyst Mei Yun Liu, for their inspiring leadership on many of these efforts and more. We consider Anne, Mei, and the entire Ambulatory enterprise key partners in delivering on exceptional patient experiences every day.”
Ms. Rubinstein also called for celebration of the contributions of Dr. Cassano; Alan Adler, MD, Senior Medical Director of the Mount Sinai Doctors Faculty Practice; Paul Zucker, Vice President, Ambulatory Operations, Mount Sinai Beth Israel; and Burton Drayer, MD, Chair of Diagnostic, Molecular, and Interventional Radiology, who served for years as Chief Executive Officer of the Mount Sinai Doctors Faculty Practice.
“I'm actually moved by how much the doctor knew about my medical history. I've only seen him once before, more than a year ago. I'm sure he read my records before my visit. But it is still touching to know that he cared enough to go through the details of my health history and spoke to me like a thoughtful friend.”
– Office Visit, Mount Sinai Doctors Faculty Practice Primary Care
Kelly Cassano, DO
Chief Executive Officer of the Mount Sinai Doctors Faculty Practice, Dean for Clinical Affairs, and Senior Vice President for Ambulatory Operations
Anne Dickerson, MPA
Vice President Administration and Planning, Mount Sinai Doctors Faculty Practice
Mei Yun Liu