Radiologists who are neat-freaks should give yourself a pat on the back. A new study from Harvard Medical School found that the cleanliness and receptionist’s demeanor heavily influences a patient’s perception of the radiology department.
A team of researchers led by Johannes Boos analyzed surveys from 4,938 of the nearly 100,000 patients who visited Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center’s radiology department between January 2015 and January 2016. Patients were asked to complete the surveys via electronic kiosks and online. The questions were based on a five-point system, one being the lowest and five being the best score, and participants were also allowed to add comments. The vast majority (92.4 percent) completed the surveys on the kiosks and only 7.6 percent answered the questions on the website.
The questions concerned the patient’s perspective of the department’s cleanliness and interactions with physician, nurse, technologist, and receptionist. After assessing the scores and complaints, the researchers found that 19.9 percent of low ratings were due to cleanliness of the facility, and 18.1 percent focused on the receptionist’s level of friendliness. Patients seemed to focus on non-medical features of their experience, as complains on wait time made up 21.9 percent of the surveys and communication at 13.3 percent.
“Cleanliness, wait time, patient-staff communication, and especially courtesy of the receptionist were found to be important factors for patient satisfaction,” wrote the researchers.