Delta—Chapter 3: Changing Experiences


Chapter 3: Changing Experiences

Debunking 3 myths about patient experience

When a person goes to the doctor, they assume the physician will make him well because the physician has done so before. Positive outcomes are the baseline of the service; effectiveness is non-negotiable. But consumers aren't experts in evaluating the differences in outcomes among a number of choices. What they do evaluate—and share—are their experiences across the care continuum.

If differentiation and growth are strategic imperatives for healthcare organizations, intentionally designed experiences will be integral to success.

In order for those experiences to happen, we need to banish three long-held assumptions about patient experience:

Myth 01: Patient Experience is the same as Patient Satisfaction.
Patient satisfaction scores provide little insight into what actually happened during the care experience or how to fix what went wrong—it simply tabulates satisfaction. Service improvement will require experience-specific data to translate feedback into actionable information.

Myth 02: Designing the Patient Experience Requires Large-scale Capital Investment.
The drivers of an ideal experience tend to be more related to experiential attributes (e.g. sympathy of staff) rather than capital-related issues (e.g. unrestricted visiting hours). To drive growth and overall patient engagement, we must design ways of connecting with patients, families, and their support systems on an emotional level.

Myth 03: We Know What Our Patients Want and Need.
In terms of data, providers know their patients perhaps better than anyone else. But do they understand their patients emotionally? Do they know how to align patient expectations with reality of care delivery? Organizations need to go beyond just data gathering to understand their patients and provide the best possible care.

Healthcare delivery systems are complicated and disjointed; thoughtful experience design can counteract this fragmentation. Future healthcare experiences will be invisible, unobtrusive, and easily integrated into people's lives.

Read more. Download Delta—Volume 1.