Sentiment analysis enhances patient experience

With a proliferation of online reviews, ratings and HCAHPS scores guiding consumers' healthcare decisions, sentiment analysis can give hospitals an edge to differentiate themselves from their peers and competitors, according to Becker's Hospital Review.

Sentiment analysis, which is making inroads into the healthcare industry, uses software to analyze written text, such as reviews, tweets and Facebook status updates, to determine the writer's intent, emotional state or satisfaction level, the Huffington Post reported.

Hospitals can use the strategy to improve patient experience by analyzing patients' comments on satisfaction surveys. Sentiment analysis could join hospitals' patient experience improvement tools for three reasons, according to Becker's.

1. It quantifies performance: With sentiment analysis, hospitals classify patients' comments into component parts--such as people, places and process, and then into physicians and nurses within the people category--and score them. By scoring comments based on whether they are positive or negative, hospitals can quantify patients' experience and identify areas to improve.

2. It provides in-depth insight: Hospitals also can classify patients' comments into HCAHPS categories--which include communication with nurses, communication with doctors and responsiveness of hospital staff--to deepen their understanding of their HCAHPS scores and know what factors are affecting Medicare reimbursement.

3. It motivates staff: Sentiment analysis can provide positive comments to motivate healthcare team members to deliver excellent patient experiences. Hospitals also can use negative comments to identify and respond to inadequacies in processes or substandard experiences.

For more:
- here's the Becker's article
- check out the Huffington Post piece