Man lying in a hospital bed at Hadassah University Medical Center in Jerusalem’s Ein Kerem [illustrative]..
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
A Health Ministry survey of emergency departments in 26 general hospitals around the country released on Monday showed that average satisfaction among patients and their families who went for urgent medical care was only 56 percent.
About 69% said they received adequate explanations and information, 66% said the physical conditions of the departments were good and 59% were willing to recommend them to others.
The survey, carried out in May to August of last year (and not in the winter, when complications of the flu cause many delays and patient overload), queries 300 people in regular emergency departments and 100 in pediatric emergency departments in each hospital. Those queried were either the patients themselves or parents of minors and adults accompanying elderly over the age of 76 in their preferred language (Hebrew, Arabic, Russian or English). A total of 10,152 people were questioned about their opinions.
Satisfaction was rated highest in pediatric emergency departments, which averaged 72%.
Of all the emergency departments, 39% stated that they would not recommend the facility they visited to others who needed such services: 45% percent said that medical personnel didn’t even bother to introduce themselves by name; 42% on average said the facilities were “not comfortable.” An average of 15% said they received no explanation of tests performed, while 35% said they waited too long from arrival until discharge or hospitalization.
The ministry said the results posed “many challenges” to the health system, and that a national program to improve services in emergency departments, as pushed by Minister MK Ya’acov Litzman, “is expected to provide a broad answer to these challenges.
The survey thus provides a basis for improving emergency department service over the long haul and to integrate a model of incentives to those who are best.