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Effortless care experiences

Health systems have always put their best foot forward in the exam room, and patients are grateful for it. This is starting to show in the data. National overall hospital ratings in HCAHPS surveys have increased by a full ten points since 2008.1 That’s quite a milestone—but healthcare leaders shouldn’t be celebrating yet.

Satisfied patients aren’t necessarily loyal patients. In fact, patients today are more likely to change providers than they’ve ever been. According to new research from NRC Health and The MetroHealth System in Cleveland, 80% of patients reported that they’d switch providers for “convenience factors” alone.

This could have startling ramifications for health-system operations. Losing just one patient can cost a hospital $1.4 million over the patient’s lifetime.2 In a hypercompetitive landscape, where system consolidation and declining reimbursements are narrowing margins, no healthcare organization can countenance that loss.

If 80% of patients are willing to walk away for convenience, it behooves health leaders to ask: How can we decrease effort to increase retention?

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