Cooley Dickinson PHO

Family talking with doctor

Making Patient Experience a Priority Systemwide

At Cooley Dickinson, we don’t look at patient experience in isolation as something to be addressed only at the physician or practice level. Our goal has been to develop a program that can be deployed and implemented systemwide so everyone understands what we’re trying to achieve. We want it to be a priority in practices, at the hospital, at ambulatory levels and in outpatient clinics,” said Norman Stachelek, President and Executive Director at Cooley Dickinson Physician Hospital Organization.


Cooley Dickinson has been participating in the MHQP Statewide Patient Experience Survey for years, using it to measure and address patient experience across five different domains: access to care, quality of care, coordination of care, confidence in providers and the overall appointment experience.


According to Mr. Stachelek, "we feed the survey information back to our practices and work with them to prioritize their improvement activity. For example, access is a much bigger issue than meets the eye. Once we started feeding our practices data, they began to see things from a different perspective. They started to recognize that they needed to improve. Now, we’re working with them to address their particular access needs, whether it’s recruiting more physicians, shifting their work schedules, or easing the burden of bringing on a partner.”


As part of their program, Cooley Dickinson aligns quality incentives with financial incentives for their providers to ensure that patient experience remains a priority. The data is motivating Cooley Dickinson’s practices to improve the quality of engagement with their patients.


"Many of our practices take great pride in their performance in the PES. Some have gone so far as to communicate their progress back to their patients, letting them know 'here’s how we’re doing'. We believe that the statewide PES is a critical tool that can continue to help us improve patient centered care and a key component of closing the loop between providers and patients, concluded Mr. Stachelek.