An analysis of patient comments in the first two months of 2021 shows a trend in patients seeking information on how to schedule a COVID vaccine. Compared to the last two months of 2020, there has been a 301% increase in the mention of vaccines in free text patient comments. A limited vaccine supply has caused distribution challenges and has left many vulnerable patients struggling to understand their next steps.
In December, SurveyVitals made a vaccine-specific question available as a part of the national COVID question set
. Of the 20,000 patients who have responded to the question When available, will you get the COVID-19 vaccine?
, 80.41% said “yes.” Your patients are likely to view you as a resource in helping them to schedule their vaccines. Patient comments such as “I need a vaccine! Where can I go?” and “I would like information on how I can get my vaccine” are growing in frequency on patient experience surveys.
Whether or not your practice is administering the COVID vaccine to patients, it may be a good idea to have information and resources available to address questions about getting the vaccine. Here are some best practices for supporting your patients during this time.
- Ensure all staff understands current eligibility criteria and vaccine supply in your state. Have a system in place to educate all staff on any changes in these criteria.
- If your practice is administering the vaccine, make scheduling instructions available to patients. Ensure patients are aware of any proof of eligibility that is required in order to receive the vaccine. If patients schedule their vaccines through a patient portal, provide instructions on how to sign up and log in.
- If your practice is not administering the vaccine, provide resources to external information where they can learn more. These may include links to state and health district websites, or any local phones lines that have been set up for vaccine questions.
- Follow up on patient questions. If the patient reaches out with questions related to vaccine scheduling or eligibility, provide any information and resources you can–even if you are not able to schedule a vaccine for that patient.
- Provide consistent information. Create scripts, handouts, or response templates for discussing vaccine scheduling and availability with patients. This ensures that all staff communicate the same information and reduces the risk of causing confusion.
- Include information on your website and have resources available for patients at your practice for better visibility.
Show empathy to patients who are experiencing challenges with getting their vaccines. Your concern and willingness to help may positively influence patient perceptions surrounding access and confidence and trust within the community.
Utilize your comment keyword search to find out if vaccine questions are trending among your patient population. Enabling alerts and the Contact Me feature can bring these concerns to your attention promptly so you can act quickly to help your patients.
SurveyVitals makes it easy to capture patient feedback, and with real-time, actionable insights understand your patient experience. Schedule a demo
to learn more.
Hope McCain March 17th, 2021 Categories: Best Practices, COVID-19, featured, Patient Experience
Tags: best practices
, comment analysis
, patient comments
, patient experience