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Patient Satisfaction-What healthcare industry can learn from e-retail industry?

20 Aug 2018 | by Dr. Surabhi Bhati

'Patient satisfaction' is a measure to identify how happy patients are with the services provided to them by the clinical and non-clinical staff of the hospital. Patient satisfaction plays a crucial role in retaining existing patients as well as, getting new referrals. Patients who are highly satisfied with the services of a hospital tend to stick with that particular healthcare provider.

These patients are loyal customers and have more than 80% probability of recommending the hospital to others.

If your patients are not satisfied with you, you are bound to lose them to your competitors!

With evolving consumerization in the healthcare industry, the expectations of patient's have drastically changed. To advance in the highly competitive healthcare industry, it is critical that hospitals should start learning and implementing best practices of other consumer-focused industry.

The industry which has best-utilized consumer satisfaction as their biggest advantage is e-commerce retail. In 2017, retail e-commerce sales worldwide amounted to 2.3 trillion US dollar and expected to grow to 4.88 Trillion US dollars by 2021. It has become one of the best revenue generating industry because of its ability to keep the customers highly satisfied.

If the healthcare industry wants to achieve the same height as the retail industry, they should start working towards improving patient satisfaction and utilizing the insights from patient surveys. Patients insights can provide them useful information on what patients want and hence could play a crucial role in improving the market share of your hospital in today’s cut-throat competition.

Patient satisfaction for healthcare is same as Consumer satisfaction for retail

E-commerce industry has achieved enormous success on the basis of their ability to utilise Consumer satisfaction. Retail industry uses consumer feedback to improve their existing product, launch a new product, enter a new market and to decide the best selling price for their product.

The best example of expert consumer service is none other than, Amazon. They are known for their high standard of consumer service. Amazon was able to penetrate diverse market all over the world because of their ability to understand consumer better than any of their competitors.

It is high time for the healthcare industry to start utilizing consumer / patient satisfaction to improve and grow.

Have you ever wondered why do you like shopping from one shop better than other? Even though, the items you are buying is available at the same price at other shops.

The answer to your preference does not lie in apparent things like quality, price, distance from your house. It lies in your overall experience of buying. It includes whole buyer's journey from the point of entry into the shop, selecting your choice, to the final payment for a purchase. This complete cycle constitutes consumer experience cycle. The retail industry studies this consumer cycle thoroughly and works towards improving processes giving phenomenal customer experience every time.

The same logic is also applied to a very unique industry of Healthcare. No doubt patients are in need of the service. It was not long back when healthcare was guided by the providers and patients had a very little say in how they are treated as people.

It is undeniable that medical treatment requires field specialization and is best guided by the clinicians, who are experts in their field. It is understandable that treatment is best recommended by doctors and patients has to follow the treatment plan. Even though patients have a limited say in medical treatment, they can provide greater insight into hospitals services and processes. Hospitals can utilize these insights to improve their services.

Patient satisfaction- the new dawn of healthcare industry

The changes in the healthcare ecosystem (government regulations, NABH and JCI accreditation, emerging corporate hospitals, penetration of insurance in healthcare) have empowered patients in a substantial way. The patient-centric approach has significantly changed the outlook of the healthcare industry from what patients need, to what patients want.

Patient satisfaction is the measure to indicate how happy your patients were with the complete experience of getting the healthcare, both within and out of the healthcare facility. It provides patients point of view on the delivery of care and insights for the hospital to improve their services.


Let’s have a look at some statistics related to patient satisfaction in the global healthcare market. These statistics give us a fair understanding of the importance of patient satisfaction.

  • The patient expects the same level of service satisfaction from healthcare providers as they are getting in any other non- medical service.

  • According to the Medical Group Management Association MGMA nearly 80% of “better performing” practices use patient satisfaction surveys.

  • 1 out of 8 patient left the hospital for other hospitals after the first consultation.

  • According to a McKinsey report, 53% of patients reported that they value great consumer service in a healthcare provider.

So the next question is, as a hospital administrator how are you going to quantify and measure patient satisfaction in your hospital?

The best and easiest way to measure and analyze patient satisfaction would be to use a real-time patient feedback survey to listen to your patient's concern in real time. The electronic patient feedback system will help you in responding to your patients in real time and will provide you data analysis of each encounter to be utilized for process improvements.


Interested in optimising patient feedback for your hospital? Contact Healtho5 today for MedEnagage Feedback -Real-time patient feedback solution.

We at Healtho5 are on a mission to solve patient engagement market in India and provide affordable easy to use solutions to the healthcare industry and patients.

Visit Healtho5 or call us @ +91-8047092031

About the Author: Dr Surabhi Bhati is Marketing Manager at Healtho5 Solutions. She has a medical degree with an MBA in Health Information Technology (HIT). She is passionate about healthcare innovation, writing, and online marketing.