Patient & visitor feedback: friends & family test

Patient & visitor feedback: friends & family testWhat is the 'Friends and Family Test'?

The 'Friends and Family Test' is our anonymous electronic survey, which asks patients and visitors how likely they are to recommend our services to their friends and family if they need similar care or treatment. People can answer using a scale of “extremely likely” to “extremely unlikely”. When combined with follow-up questions, the 'Friends and Family Test' can drive a culture of patient centred care by highlighting areas of good practice and opportunities for improvement.

Friends and family test questionThe 'Friends and Family Test' currently asks the following questions:

  1. How likely are you to recommend our ward/service to friends and family if they need similar care or treatment?
    • Please tell us the main reason you gave that score [this is the only section where people can write comments]
  2. Did we see you promptly?
  3. Did we listen and explain?
  4. Did we show care and respect?
  5. Did we meet your expectations?

What are we trying to achieve?

We want to make sure that patients and their families get the best care possible. To do this, we need them to let us know what we are doing well and what needs to change. The 'Friends and Family Test' helps us to ensure that we understand what it is like to use our services and how we can continuously improve.

What have we done?

We have been using the 'Friends and Family Test' since June 2013. We now have 50 handheld devices allowing patients to give feedback on over 30 wards / services within North Shore and Waitakere Hospitals. Because the survey is electronic the results are immediately uploaded into our system so that they are available in ‘real time’. Having access to real-time feedback allows us to act on the information as quickly as possible.

Between July 2013 and June 2014 over 6,800 people provided feedback using the 'Friends and Family Test'. Of those, 69% said they were extremely likely to recommend our services. The 'Friends and Family Test' provides us with an overall measure of performance called a 'Net Promoter Score'. This is calculated by first categorising responses into the following groups:

  • Promoters – are those people who answer with “extremely likely”
  • Neutral – are those people who answer with “likely” or “don’t know”
  • Detractors – are those people who answer with “neither likely nor unlikely”, “unlikely”, or “extremely unlikely”

The percentage of detractors is subtracted from the percentage of promoters to give our net promoter score.

Overall  'Friends and family test' results for (Jul 2013 - Jun 2014)
Overall 'Friends and family test' results (Jul 2013 - Jun 2014)

'Friends and family test' results for Questions 2 to 5 (Jul 2013 - Jun 2014)
'Friends and family test' results for Questions 2 to 5 (Jul 2013 - Jun 2014)

Where to from here?

In 2015 we plan to redevelop our survey system so that more people can use it, and services can access better information to drive continuous improvement.

Increasing response numbers

Currently people can only complete the survey if they are in our hospitals. The redevelopment will allow people to provide feedback from home and in the community by accessing an online link or downloading a smartphone app. We will also develop the public access to results to encourage people to provide feedback and show them what we are doing as a result.

More flexibility with survey questions

Another important change will be to the survey questions. At the moment the questions are set and there is no way for different areas to have a say in what is asked. We will be developing a library of survey questions so that different areas can ask questions that are relevant to the people who use their services. This will give us the opportunity to work with the community to develop survey questions around the things that really matter to them. We are also working with our Human Resources team to develop a staff experience survey that we can compare with the experience of patients and their friends and family.

Using feedback to make changes

Every ward / service in the DHB will be expected to have a continuous improvement process in place to make sure that feedback from the public really does result in positive change. We want many more staff to have access to the results, and we are redeveloping the reports that are available. This includes looking at people’s feedback in relation to our organisational values so that we can measure how well we are living up to our values.

What can you do to help us?

  • Give feedback on your experience by completing the 'Friends and Family Test' – ask a staff member to give you a tablet and show you how to begin the survey
  • Give us your feedback by emailing us at Customer Feedback
  • Encourage your friends and family to give feedback if they use our services
  • Have a look at the results of the patient experience surveys which are displayed on ‘quality boards’ in every ward