5 Vital Questions to Ask on a Patient Survey

Cortex has conducted 500,000+ patient surveys and gathered 4.5 million discrete patient responses to questions our nurses have posed to patients. Over time, certain questions have risen in popularity among our customers because the data gathered helps them make meaningful changes in the lives of their patients. Here are 5 that are vital to a successful patient survey:


1. Do you have any concerns with your health?

Most patient surveys focus on specific issues related to the care being provided at that time. While these questions are also valuable, we have found that initiating the survey (or telephone conversation) with a more general question enables patients to think holistically about their health. In fact, patients often volunteer concerns that have not yet been addressed with this question, which is what makes it our most vital question across almost all of our patient surveys.

2. Do you have a follow-up appointment scheduled with your provider?

Cortex often surveys patients who have recently arrived home after an in-patient stay at a hospital or skilled nursing facility. Given the nationwide effort to reduce readmissions, our surveys to patients in these situations often focus on continuity of care. Ensuring that a patient has a scheduled follow-up early on can avoid complications in the recovery at home, and help create a greater partnership between providers in their unique silos of care.

3. Is there anyone on your care team taking (who took) extra good care of you?

Healthcare workers are not recognized enough. Surveys are a great time to solicit feedback about specific individuals and the care they are providing/did provide to this patient. Cortex has found that time and again, patients remember the names of staff members who went above and beyond and are thrilled with the opportunity to recognize their great care. Our platform also enabled providers to send quick thank you notes and electronic gift cards to team members when they are mentioned.

4. Have you had any falls recently?

Also most relevant to the post-acute patient population, this question gets at the heart of a patient's recovery at home. A fall after any medical procedure typically causes concern. Our customers love asking this question so they can identify patients possibly in need of more care.

5. Have you recently had any of the following symptoms - fever, nausea, vomiting, chills, weakness, shortness of breath, or increased pain?

In contrast to the first question, asking about specific symptoms can also help patients recall issues and concerns that they might otherwise not volunteer on a survey. We ask this question in a variety of formats, but at the heart of all of the versions is the belief that symptoms are indications of deeper concerns. Catching symptoms before a patient declines further helps providers to prevent unnecessary hospital readmissions and intervene with the right level of care appropriate to that patient. 
What questions do you like you use on your surveys?

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