Steamboat Springs Yampa Valley Medical Center recently was honored for its efforts to make sure patients are satisfied with their care.
The company Avatar, which measures patient satisfaction for hospitals, has awarded the hospital a national "Top Performer" award for 2005. Avatar measured Yampa Valley Medical Center's level of service against about 250 other hospitals, said Judy Zuccone, the hospital's director of quality services. Ten receive the award each year.
This is the fourth year in a row that YVMC has received the award; it is one of two hospitals to do so.
Zuccone credited the hospital's success to employees' dedication to the organization's values. "We do place a lot of emphasis on our values, one of which is excellence in care," she said. Other related values are collaboration, compassion and a positive culture.
A couple of weeks after some patients leave the hospital, the patients receive a survey from Avatar. An average of 150 to 200 people return their surveys each month, said Vicki Lickteig, quality management coordinator for YVMC.
The surveys cover a broad range of topics, including nursing care, environment, pain level, meals and discharge planning, Lickteig said. Comments are then passed on to department managers.
Zuccone said that the hospital has a really dedicated staff that contributes to the hospital's level of service.
"It's not just nursing staff, it's staff across the hospital," she said. "That includes the people who interact and the people who keep the hospital clean."
Zuccone said she appreciates any comments the hospital can get.
"We do like to consider patient feedback to be a gift for us," Zuccone said. "When things are not going well, we have an opportunity to fix the system; otherwise, we would not know about it."