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Patient Experience Scores and Why They Matter

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Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah is rated among the best nationally in patient satisfaction. After each appointment, patients are sent a survey to tell us about their experience. This feedback is very important and is used to improve support services for patients and community members.

Patients do not receive any incentives from completing a patient experience survey.

What is the patient experience?

At Huntsman Cancer Institute, our patients are at the center of everything we do. Our vision of delivering a future free of cancer is guided by three core principles—putting patient and community first, coming together for a united effort, and excellence in all we do. From the first interaction to the last treatment, we recognize that we are meeting and treating people at one of the hardest times in their life. While in our care, the patient’s experience is of the utmost importance to us.

How do we measure the patient experience?

As of January 2023, we use surveying software that is tailored to each patient. After each appointment, patients receive an invitation to complete a personalized survey that asks them to provide feedback. We are interested in hearing about their visit—from the initial communication to the services and treatments they received.

Why do patients receive surveys?

Hearing directly from our patients about their experience helps us understand what we can do to improve. Feedback collected from these surveys helps our team improve processes to exceed patient expectations.

“Our goal is to really listen to patients throughout their whole continuum of care and be able to improve their experience,” said A’Lisha Finch, director of business operations. “We can’t improve unless we know what’s going well and what is not going well. Through these surveys, we can recognize our staff for the great work they are doing to make an impact and improve patients’ lives.”

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What does Huntsman Cancer Institute do with the feedback?

We use the feedback to improve clinical outcomes and ensure compassionate, consistent, and patient-centered care across our health system. We focus on behaviors, processes, and people mentioned in the feedback. For patients who agree to a follow-up, we may contact them to learn more and hear how we can improve. Feedback is also posted online in the form of reviews for each provider. We also use the feedback to make changes across our organization.

Why does Huntsman Cancer Institute post the comments online?

The comments are posted on the provider’s profile page as reviews. Patients and their families use these comments to help choose the best providers for their needs. Names are not included in the comments. Here is an example review:

"Setting up my appointment was very easy. This was my first time even walking into the Huntsman, so I felt a bit lost and unsure. The person at the main front doors was very helpful in giving directions. And then I met Bella at the check-in. Bella was so friendly, so helpful and made me feel very comfortable and welcome. I wanted to make my payment in full and Bella made sure my account was to date. I felt relieved and comfortable and taken care of. Dr Maurer is amazing, she is very personable, genuinely concerned about your individual health and care. She knew me and my condition as she walked into the room, she didn't need to use any charts, the computer, or anything else to know who I was or what I was there for. For my limited time being with her in the past, she KNEW me and treated me like we've known each other for a very long time. She is an amazing surgeon and I have full and complete trust in her and would recommend her to anyone. Dr. Maurer and her team are incredible people. They all treated me like family."

-Outpatient Clinic 3A

Cancer touches all of us.