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Jarrard Phillips Cate & Hancock Releases Patient Experience 2.0: Expanding Your Horizons

Intensive research effort highlights innovative Patient Experience strategies; advocates a tailored approach; includes self-assessment tool

BRENTWOOD, Tenn., and CHICAGO — Healthcare strategic communications and engagement firm Jarrard Phillips Cate & Hancock, Inc. has released Patient Experience 2.0: Expanding Your Horizons, a national research effort involving Patient Experience (PX) leads from some of the country’s top hospitals and health systems.

Consumers are playing an unprecedented role in disruption. As healthcare transitions to a more competitive, consumer-driven industry, health systems nationwide face increasing pressure to improve the experience they provide to their patients. Amid this transformation, PX has emerged as an exciting, sometimes messy and energizing movement that is re-shaping the delivery of care across the country.

Consider a few quick findings from the study:

  • 85% of respondents said PX is a top three priority for their health system.
  • 70% of health systems reported offering leadership incentives tied to PX.
  • 64% of health systems reported seeing an increase in volumes since starting PX initiatives.
  • Only 35% of health systems publish patient reviews on their websites.

Jarrard Inc.’s research is a mixture of surveys and one-on-one interviews with leaders from more than 100 top health systems of all types and sizes, including regional and national systems, non-profit systems, investor-owned systems, children’s hospitals and academic medical centers. It made three points abundantly clear:

  • Simply improving HCAHPS scores alone won’t cut it any more.
  • Health systems that haven’t adopted an expansive, consumer-driven mindset when it comes to PX are behind the curve nationally.
  • PX has evolved beyond “one-size-fits-all” strategies – health systems must develop custom strategies that fit their organizations and, more importantly, their communities.

“Far too many hospitals and health systems are still thinking of PX simply as a bedside initiative,” said Debbie Landers, who leads Jarrard, Inc.’s Patient Experience practice. “Today, patients’ impressions and perceptions of your organization begins well before they have ever walked through your door. If you wait until an inpatient setting to actively engage them, it may be too late.”

More than half of the survey respondents have expanded their PX efforts beyond their system’s walls. That is, they consider a patient’s experience to begin at the moment an individual first researches a health concern online to the moment that patient’s final bill is settled.

In many cases, leaders are looking beyond the healthcare industry itself to find more effective strategies in consumer brands such as Amazon, Nordstrom and Chick-fil-A.

While PX is ultimately a culture versus a mere series of programs, some innovative tactics that emerged from the research. Two of the more unique were:

  • Establishing a social media listening center for hospitals and clinics
  • Creating life-size patients from cardboard that serve as reminders to staff to put patients first

“Patient Experience is at the forefront of how hospitals are grappling with the dramatic changes underway in the business of caring for patients, and meeting their increasing expectations,” said CEO David Jarrard. ”No matter which way the political winds blow in Washington, the foundational dynamics underpinning the rise of Patient Experience, such as the shift to value-based reimbursement and increasing consumerism, are here to stay. As a result, the stakes have never been higher for health systems across the nation as they seek to thrive in an increasingly competitive market.”

Based on the research, Jarrard, Inc. has also launched a new online assessment tool where leaders can benchmark their own systems’ PX efforts against the broader healthcare industry.

About Jarrard Inc.

Based in Nashville, Tenn., with a second office in Chicago, Jarrard Phillips Cate & Hancock, Inc. is a U.S. top 15 strategic communications and engagement firm for the nation’s leading healthcare providers experiencing significant change, challenge or opportunity. Founded in 2006, the firm has worked with more than 300 clients in more than 40 states and served as a communications advisor on more than $32 billion in announced M&A and partnership transaction communications. A proven strategy leader, Jarrard Inc. delivers tightly focused issue management campaigns and long-term transformational initiatives designed to advance healthcare providers’ most important goals. As a member of The Advisory Board, the firm is also part of a collaborative effort to elevate performance and solve some of healthcare’s most pressing issues. For more information, visit or follow us @JarrardInc


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