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Using CAHPS® Surveys to Improve the Patient's Experience of Care

Slide presentation from the AHRQ 2011 conference.

On September 18, 2011, Susan Edgman-Levitan made this presentation at the 2011 Annual Conference. Select to access the PowerPoint® presentation (95 KB). Plugin Software Help.

Slide 1

Using CAHPS® [Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems] Surveys to Improve the Patient's Experience of Care

Susan Edgman-Levitan, PA
Executive Director
John D. Stoeckle Center for Primary Care Innovation
Massachusetts General Hospital
Co-PI Yale CAHPS Team

Slide 2

Rationale for Critical Stakeholders

  • Environment:
    • Transparency of performance measures, including patient experience at hospital, practice, and MD level.
    • Cost-shifting to patients is growing.
    • Patient-centeredness is one of the Institute of Medicine (IOM) six aims.

Slide 3

Rationale for Critical Stakeholders

  • Quality of Care:
    • Improved patient adherence and patient outcomes.
    • Improved patient safety.
    • Reduction in malpractice risk (potential large savings by reducing patient dissatisfaction).
    • Patients are the only ones who can judge many aspects of quality of care.

Slide 4

Rationale for Critical Stakeholders

  • "What's In It For Me": The Clinical Environment:
    • Creates high performance practices/units and integrally links to care redesign efforts.
    • Strengthens ability to recruit and retain excellent staff.
    • Improves clinician and staff satisfaction.
    • Reduces the time and energy currently invested in "service recovery".
    • Reduces cost of rework.

Slide 5

High-Impact Suggestions for Improvement

  • Create formal patient/family advisory councils and patient/family faculty programs for all major services and practices.
  • Include a review of patient experience of care data and comments in all senior leadership meetings.
  • Implement leadership interviews of patients who have experienced a medical error and/or who have had an experience of care on a quarterly basis:
    • Share stories from these interviews in leadership meetings and with front line staff.

Slide 6

High-Impact Suggestions for Improvement

  • Implement HR policies to link hiring, orientation, training, staff education, and performance evaluations to quality and safety goals. Be aggressive about managing people who do not uphold the values and culture you are building.
  • Implement employee surveys to identify barriers to culture change and quality of work life for all staff.
  • Expand service excellence training programs for all front-line staff.

Slide 7

High-Impact Suggestions for Improvement

  • Create thoughtful reward and recognition programs for all staff, based on the patient experience of care data and comments:
    • Include stories in practice newsletters and local papers.
    • Provide tuition reimbursement to attend educational programs, and financial incentives for worthy employees.
  • Provide regular educational programs and webinars on topics relevant to improving the patient's experience of care.

Slide 8

High-Impact Suggestions for Improvement

  • Provide support for implementing qualitative methods of collecting patient feedback to complement CAHPS survey data:
    • Practice walkthroughs.
    • Focus groups.
    • Comment cards.
  • Collect survey data at the clinician level, whenever possible.

Slide 9

High-Impact Suggestions for Improvement

  • Use The CAHPS Improvement Guide as a free resource for information about quality improvement methods, data analysis, practical strategies, and interventions.
Page last reviewed October 2014
Internet Citation: Using CAHPS® Surveys to Improve the Patient's Experience of Care. October 2014. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD.


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