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How can I invite rapid online feedback about remote consultations?

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Here we are, in the midst of a global pandemic. Suddenly, everyone's priorities have changed. Yet, as I argued recently, online patient feedback still matters.

In brief, it matters because:

  • it is one way that we, as patients and carers, can actively support health service staff and health system learning
  • the flow of gratitude to specific staff in specific settings helps morale, pride, confidence and fosters an open culture
  • we need feedback on new forms of care.

Listening to patients, learning to improveIn recent weeks we have seen a very rapid shift to remote consultations in many healthcare settings. This creates a new need for rapid patient feedback (how well do these new approaches work? What needs improving?). It also creates a new opportunity, especially if both clinician and patient are already online (just send a link!).

So how can you quickly and easily invite feedback about remote consultations via Care Opinion?

To get started, you need three things. We'll expand on these below.

  1. An invitation: simple text to explain what you want, why, and how.
  2. A link: what the patient follows to arrive at Care Opinion in the right way.
  3. A delivery mechanism: how you get the invitation and the link to the patient.

The invitation

Here's some sample text for an invitation to give feedback via Care Opinion. You could alter this to suit your own setting.

Please give us some feedback about your experience of our service by following the link below. You can say what was good, what could have been better, and how you felt.
Your feedback will be handled by Care Opinion, so you remain anonymous. We will be able to read your feedback, and reply to you via the Care Opinion website, but we will not know your identity.
We are using Care Opinion for feedback because it is safe, simple and independent of the NHS. Your feedback can help us learn and improve.

The link

When you invite the patient to post feedback, you give them a link to get them to Care Opinion quickly. The simplest link is our home page:

But there are better links than this, which will help the patient get their feedback to the right service quickly and reliably. We have two different links at the moment, that anyone can use.

To make a link, start by finding the service on Care Opinion which the feedback will be about.

For example, imagine that Dr Colvin at the Lawson Practice in Hackney wants to invite feedback about her service. Her practice on Care Opinion is here:

From here, she can navigate to either of the links she needs.

Standard "tell your story" link

On the right hand side of the service there is a blue button captioned "Tell your story - make a difference". Click the button to arrive at this page:

Copy the page address (in the browser address bar). If you provide this link to the patient they will be able to tell a story using our standard workflow. The service code in the link will be used to ensure we suggest that service at the right time in the process. The patient will be able to link their story to additional services also, if they want. (For example, the feedback might be about the general practice and secondary care.)

Kiosk mode

A second option is to provide a link to the "kiosk mode" for the service. Again, start from the service page, and look lower on the right hand side. You'll see a text link to "kiosk mode". Follow this to arrive at the kiosk mode page:

If you provide this link to the patient, they will be able to share feedback using our kiosk mode workflow, which is shorter and quicker.

The main disadvantage of kiosk mode is that the feedback can relate only to the one service set in the link. But this is unlikely to be a problem in the current context.

Learn more about kiosk mode

Coming soon: campaign links

We are working on a new feature for subscribers which will allow you to create your own "campaign links" with some extra superpowers. As soon as we have these available, I'll blog here and we'll let you know.

The delivery mechanism

So now you have an invitation and a link. How do you get them to the patient?

It depends on your situation and what's available to you. Here are a few ideas:

Online consultations

Can you add the invitation and link to your online system in some way - for example, the start screen, or the post-consultation screen, or an email sent by the system before or after the consultation?

Phone consultations 

If you have email addresses, perhaps the invitation and link could be emailed to patients who've had a phone consultation in the past week?

Existing online survey

If you run an online survey already, you might add the invitation and link at the end. Some people who complete the survey will have things (not covered in the survey) they want to tell you. Care Opinion provides a simple way to do that.

Existing Friends and Family Test (FFT) system

Some organisations will be using an automated FFT system, for example via SMS text message. A short invitation and link can be offered in the last text of a sequence.

I hope this will be useful - good luck. And let us know how you get on, so we can share your learning with others.

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