Patient Experience in the Emergency Department

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Patient Experience
Why Yale Medicine?
  • We are focused on providing the best and safest care possible.
  • Our emergency department doctors value patient welfare, quality treatment and open communication.
  • Our emergency department strives to provide the right care, in the right place, at the right time.

Quality patient experience, says Sharon Anoush Chekijian, MD, assistant professor of emergency medicine and medical director of patient experience in the Department of Emergency Medicine at Yale Medicine, is not the same as patient satisfaction. It's about providing the best care possible, as efficiently and safely as possible.

As hospitals and other healthcare institutions shift their focus from disease-centered care to patient-centered care, patient experience plays an increasingly central role, and nowhere more so than in Yale Medicine’s Department of Emergency Medicine. Yale Medicine’s emergency department efforts—from safety and quality goals, to employee and patient satisfaction measurements, to the mission of providing the right care in the right place at the right time—all feed into a single mission: to give patients the greatest possible care. 

Dr. Chekijian makes a distinction between patient experience and patient satisfaction. 

“Quality patient experience is not about making patients as happy as possible,” she says, “but giving them what they need as efficiently as possible, while adequately communicating with them about what we’re doing and why we’re doing it.” Dr. Chekijian emphasizes the importance of forging relationships with patients. “It’s about educating patients and making sure their questions are answered and that they are comfortable with what we’re doing.”