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Updates on Emerging and Existing CAHPS Surveys

Posted by Greg Hyman on Jan 29, 2015 8:38:06 AM

hcahps surveysLast year brought with it an array of developments in the world of CAHPS and value-based purchasing, including the release of Hospice CAHPS and field testing of several highly-anticipated emerging instruments. This year is already shaping up to be equally momentous, with a number of significant updates announced by CMS in January, and more likely to come soon. Here is the latest news from CMS on the status of existing and emerging CAHPS Surveys.
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Topics: HCAHPS, CAHPS Surveys, ICH-CAHPS,, o/aspec, Cancer Care CAHPS

3 Key Factors and Resources for Effective Implementation of CGCAHPS

Posted by Melissa Herrett on Jan 27, 2015 3:58:20 PM

The Clinician and Group CAHPS Survey is increasingly being used by clinics and physician offices to assess the patient experience in these environments. As it becomes more common, many organizations are beginning to search for, and share, best practices and tips for effectively implementing CG-CAHPS Surveys. The following passages outline three key factors and resources that your organization can use to help ensure a more effective CG-CAHPS survey initiative.

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Three Considerations When Choosing an Online Employee Survey

Posted by Brian Ellis on Jan 22, 2015 11:25:24 AM

There are multiple factors to consider when choosing to administer your employee survey online rather than on paper or over the telephone.  Survey logistics, budget, and confidentiality concerns can all play a role in determining which administration method is right for your organization.  With the right consideration and planning, online employee surveys can generate robust data and cost savings for most organizations.

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Topics: employee engagement survey, survey methods, employee survey participation, Employee Survey Confidentiality

Three Ways Marketing Can Improve Your Patient Survey Program

Posted by Greg Hyman on Jan 21, 2015 9:07:20 AM

patient surveysWhen you think about who uses patient surveys, physicians, nurses, and patient experience leaders are probably the first roles that come to mind. However, staff from nearly all departments in any healthcare organization can help improve the success of your survey program. Marketing is one such department, as it is typically responsible, in part, for communicating the goals, vision, and mission of an organization. Because these concepts tie in closely with patient experience improvement efforts, collaboration with marketing can contribute to efficacy of your survey program. Here are a few ways marketing can help:

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Topics: HCAHPS, Patient Surveys, employee survey participation, CG-CAHPS

3 Tips for Getting the Most Out Of Your CAHPS Survey Program

Posted by Melissa Herrett on Jan 15, 2015 9:36:51 AM

If you’re familiar with CAHPS surveys, you know that at times they can be viewed negatively. They require time, money, and attention from healthcare workers who are already stretched thin when it comes to these resources. However, CAHPS surveys can serve as important tools in providing high quality care. This post outlines some key tips for getting the greatest return on your CAHPS survey program investment.


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Topics: CAHPS Survey, CAHPS Surveys

3 Tips for CG-CAHPS Survey Sampling

Posted by Greg Hyman on Jan 13, 2015 10:08:28 AM

CG-CAHPS-Survey-SamplingIt’s not uncommon for physician group leaders to have a slew of questions about CG-CAHPS, and one of the lines of questioning we at Avatar see most often concerns sampling. Patient experience leaders may initially be unsure about the right level of sampling for their group – for example, should they be sampling at the clinic or physician level, and how many returns per entity are adequate?

As with most things in life, the best and also most frustrating answer is usually “it depends.” Understanding the factors that determine appropriate CG-CAHPS survey sampling is the first step to building an effective sampling and administration plan for your group. The following are a few of the important factors you should consider in developing a sampling strategy.

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Topics: CG-CAHPS, sampling

Building a Brand for Your Employee Engagement Survey

Posted by Hannah Johnson on Jan 8, 2015 12:35:45 PM

There are many benefits that can come from conducting an employee engagement survey, but without the active participation of your staff, your organization won’t reap those benefits. It takes some effort to get employees engaged and excited to share their thoughts and opinions, but taking these required steps will produce actionable information that can lead to positive changes in your work environment. Verbally and physically branding your survey is an important step that shouldn’t be overlooked. By giving employees a solid understanding of the part they play in your employee engagement survey and continuing to build the excitement leading up to the survey with relevant collateral, your organization can be on the right track for positive change and post-survey action planning.

Appropriate Messaging

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Topics: employee engagement survey, employee engagement, employee survey, employee survey participation, How to Increase Employee Survey Participation

Patient Survey Administration Modes - Pros and Cons

Posted by Brian Ellis on Jan 6, 2015 8:49:00 AM

Whether you choose to administer patient surveys via telephone, mail, or online, determining the survey administration method that works best for your organization is crucial to positively impacting your overall return rates and results.  There are pros and cons for each method, depending on your patients’ demographics and company culture, so take the following information into consideration when determining the most appropriate administration for your patient survey project.


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A Bibliography of CAHPS Survey Resources, Vol. 1

Posted by Greg Hyman on Dec 30, 2014 8:10:07 AM

CAHPS-surveyFrom the veteran patient experience leader to the certified nursing assistant, all healthcare professionals can benefit from learning more about CAHPS surveys and how they impact an organization's ability to provide top-notch care. But as many have seen, this is usually easier said than done. The world of value-based purchasing is constantly evolving and progressing differently for different care environments. As such, staying ahead of developments can be a real challenge for busy administrators and caregivers.

Avatar provides regular updates on the changes we've identified through our network of contacts at CMS, AHRQ, and other industry agencies and organizations. Real-time updates can be very powerful, but there is also something to be said for personally digging into source material, especially when you are preparing to implement an instrument and want a foundational understanding of the tool, its status, and the national implementation schedule. If you're performing CAHPS research and are looking for information, here are a few key resources to get you started:

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Three Ways Patient Satisfaction Surveys Help Your Organization

Posted by Hannah Johnson on Dec 23, 2014 12:43:00 PM


According to an article published by The Washington Post, the average doctor sees 19 patients per day at 22 minutes per visit. Additionally, some doctors breeze through up to 60 patients per day. In order to fully understand what these numbers mean, it’s important to take into consideration how patients feel about these statistics and the speed at which they are seen. Most patients want their opinions and concerns heard. Patient surveys give patients the power to answer the question “how satisfied are you with your physician?” Further, they provide the opportunity for organizations to take these reviews and turn them into action, to help improve the care experience for all patients. 

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