CMS developing emergency department patient experience survey

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services is designing a patient experience survey for emergency department patients. On Monday, the agency submitted a formal request for information on existing tools that can measure topic areas, including communication with providers, pain control and wait time. With other CMS surveys already implemented in hospitals, home health agencies and with health and drug plans, the forth-coming patient experience survey will target adult ED patients and their caregivers, CMS said, although the agency also is interested in how it can develop a pediatric survey.

"A patient's experience in an emergency department is an essential component of their overall healthcare experience in a hospital, and we believe that a patient survey evaluating such care will further support the HHS's goals and priorities," CMS said.

Although CMS did not provide specific details on how survey results will be used, the agency said the purpose is to develop "objective comparisons of emergency department experiences across the country" and "to help improve the quality of care." Request for information (.pdf)