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NSW hospitals performing well: patient survey

A survey of NSW hospital patients has found that approximately 94 per cent describe their care as “very good” or “good”.

The Bureau of Health Information (BHI) surveyed 17,000 people across NSW about their public hospital experiences for the year 2018, and on average hospitals performed well in care outcomes and engagement at discharge, among other factors rated.

When asked how they would rate their overall care, 67 per cent of participants replied “very good" – up from 65 per cent in 2017 – and 27 per cent replied “good”. While 79 per cent of patients said they would speak highly of their experience to family and friends (up from 78 per cent).

Nurses and doctors fared well in the survey too, with 72 per cent of patients rating their doctors as “very good” and 76 per cent for nurses. Sixty-one per cent of those surveyed thought the health professionals worked well together – up from 58 per cent in 2017.

As for patient engagement, 81 per cent of patients thought that their health professional explained their treatment well and 60 per cent thought that they were involved in decisions regarding their treatment as much as they liked. Seventy-five per cent of patients felt that their nurses knew enough about their care and treatment.

The survey also highlighted some areas in which NSW hospitals can improve, chiefly regarding medication information.

Only 55 per cent of respondents felt that health professionals “completely” explained possible side effects of their take home medication.

Another area for improvement involved complications sustained during treatment. Only 52 per cent of respondents who experienced a problem or complication felt that staff were “completely” open with them about it.

In a separate survey conducted by BHI, 99 per cent of patients rated their overall cancer treatment in NSW outpatient clinics  as “very good” (85 per cent) or “good” (14 per cent).

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