Nenagh Hospital: high level of satisfaction among patients
A total of 79% of patients at Nenagh Hospital who responded to the third annual National Patient Survey said that they found their experience as "good or very good".
Within University Hospital Limerick Group a a whole, which covers Nenagh as well as University Hospital Limerick, some 80% of patients rated their overall experience as good or very good, compared to a national average of 84%.
UHL Group said that over 1,000 patients across the Mid West provided rich and detailed feedback on their experience in hospital and this was already being used to drive improvements in quality.
The survey also assigns an overall rating of hospital experience, with a national average of 8.2 out of 10 in 2019. In UL Hospitals Group, UHL scored 7.8 out of 10; Nenagh 8.2 out of 10.
The NPE Survey asked every patient who had spent at least one night in an acute hospital during May 2019 for their feedback through over 60 detailed questions and UL Hospitals achieved an overall response rate of 45%, above the target of 40%. At Nenagh Hospital, the response rate was 41%.
Patients are asked for their feedback and observations on each stage of their journey through hospital and the survey is broken down into sections on Admissions, Care on the Ward; Examination, Diagnosis and Treatment; and Discharge/Transfer.
Patients at Nenagh Hospital reported high levels of satisfaction on questions around privacy on the wards; how staff answered about operations and procedures; and the respect and dignity shown by staff.
Almost 100% of patients in Nenagh described their ward/room as clean or very clean. More than 19 in 20 patients said they had always been given a choice of food while almost nine in 10 patients described the food quality as good (33%) or very good (56%).
The survey again identified a number of areas for improvement for Nenagh. These included how UHL Group communicates with patients and families and our discharge planning.
A number of quality improvement initiatives are already underway in Nenagh in response to this year’s survey results, according to a UHL spokesperson.
A new patient information booklet has been developed which not only provides clear written information on their journey through hospital but also empowers patients to ask the right questions of medical and nursing staff to allay any anxieties.
A communications training programme will also commence in 2020 to better enable staff provide information in a way that patients can understand more easily.
These initiatives form part of a comprehensive quality improvement plan staff in Nenagh and UL Hospitals Group have developed in response to the survey findings.
Cathrina Ryan, operational director of nursing, said: “Nenagh Hospital has again met the target response rate in the 2019 National Experience Survey and I would like to thank all members of the public who have used our service for taking the time to complete this survey . This feedback is very welcome both as an acknowledgement of the care provided and also to assist the service with identifying areas for improvement.
"Privacy, being treated with respect and dignity, and food choice scored very high again in this year’s survey. Opportunities for improvement around communicating with patients and families, in particular around medication management and discharge planning, have been highlighted. Nenagh Hospital is committed to continuing work already commenced in these areas and will implement quality improvement initiatives to demonstrate to patients that we have listened to their feedback and have introduced change as a result.”
Colette Cowan, CEO, UL Hospitals Group, added:
“Each day, our staff deliver outstanding levels of care to the people of the MidWest and it is heartening to see this reflected in the survey results. It is important that we pay particular attention to those areas where our patients are less satisfied and even dissatisfied with our services.
Many of the understandable frustrations expressed by our patients will be addressed through the wider structural reforms of our healthcare system as set out in Sláintecare. But we know from the results of the National Patient Experience Survey over three years now that there are positive measures we can take in the short and medium term that can have a real impact on patient experience. We are committed to continuing this work. In every hospital and in every service, our staff are taking a keen interest in the survey results and in translating them into service improvement.”