Friday, 23 November 2012

Feedback needs to be both ways, especially for patients

Feedback is important, in almost any context I can think of. In quality improvement we are continually asking staff and patients for feedback about their experiences. I make a point of completing feedback forms that are sent to me because I believe that my opinion will - somewhere down the line - count.  Mostly this is on trust as I never get any feedback to me as to whether my involvement has been worthwhile.

Asking me, the patient for feedback is giving me the impression that you believe my views are important  Not letting them know me results of my feedback is, sort of, forgiveable (it would be nice to what "what happened later").  But what is really difficult to get to grips with is on-line feedback which is then not answered. NHS Choices runs an excellent on-line feedback scheme where patients can leave their notes about their experience.  In many cases the organisations respond with an explanation. And for many patients this is enough - to know that someone cares about their experience.

For my own GP practice there are a few pages of negative comments from patients whose experience is an issue. The fact there are no recent replies to these comments leaves me feeling like wanting to leave a note about there being no feedback...

Feedback: it works both ways.

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