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We Want to Know Patient Safety Program

A Patient-Centered Approach to Improving Patient Safety, Clinical Quality and Overall Patient Experience

Being in the hospital can be a stressful and difficult time for patients and their family members. Often, patients and family members have questions along the way, but our research shows that up to 40% of patients are reluctant to speak up, especially about breakdowns in care. This often results in missed opportunities to respond to individual patients and importantly, improve the overall health care system.

Effective approaches to encouraging patients to speak up and responding when they do are imperative to improving patient safety, clinical quality and overall patient experience.

In a recent study we found that asking about possible care breakdowns in detail, and offering a full apology when breakdowns are reported substantially increases patients’ willingness to recommend the hospital:

Did you know? Twice as many patients receiving an in-depth prompt about care breakdowns would recommend the hospital compared with those receiving no prompt (18.4% vs 8.8% respectively). Similarly, almost three times as many participants receiving a full apology would recommend the hospital compared with those receiving no apology (34.1% vs 13.6% respectively).

About the Program

We Want to Know is an evidence-based patient safety program that has been effectively implemented at MedStar Health and is available to other organizations across the country.

The program brings the patient voice to bridge the gaps in care quality, safety, and experience by a multi-modal campaign encouraging patients and family members to speak up about perceived breakdowns in care and a program specialist, who works to ensure that patients’ concerns are addressed, and that relevant safety information is captured and fed back to the system.

When implemented, the program:

  • Makes it easy for the patient and family members to speak up
  • Supports real time response from the health care system
  • Builds a culture of safety
  • Fosters and maintains trust
  • Improves HCAPs scoring and hospital reimbursement

Contact Us

If you are interested in learning more about our We Want to Know workshops, training or consulting partnerships please fill out the form below.