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Improving Patient Satisfaction with CAHPS and HOS Surveys

July 26, 2022

The Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS) and Medicare Health Outcomes Survey (HOS) are patient surveys that affect CMS star ratings – for you and for us. Survey responses are confidential and may be completed by your Medicare Advantage patients or their designated representatives. Improving patient experience leads to better health outcomes for your patients and helps support gap closure programs.

CAHPS Survey

The CAHPS survey, administered annually from March through June, asks your Medicare Advantage patients about their experience with—and to rate—their health plan and network providers. Providers and practices that have seen high patient satisfaction results generally do the following:

  • Follow up with patients when they have seen another provider or specialist
  • Ask about prescription drugs they may now be taking
  • Share pertinent clinical information with your patient’s other providers through a HIPAA-compliant health information exchange, such as HEALTHeLINK
  • Assist patients with scheduling tests and referral appointments
  • Let patients know when to expect test results and who will provide them

Your staff can also improve patient satisfaction by:

  • Leaving some open appointment slots each day for urgent and post-inpatient visits 
  • Shortening perceived wait times by assigning staff to perform preliminary work-up activities, such as blood pressure and temperature checks
  • Providing brief and frequent updates for appointment schedule delays and offering options to reschedule or be seen by another provider
  • Encouraging patients to make routine checkup or follow-up appointments in advance
  • Proactively calling patients months in advance to schedule tests, screenings, or physicals

To view CAHPS survey questions, click here.

HOS Survey

The HOS survey is administered annually from July through November. This survey is the first patient-reported outcome survey used in Medicare-managed care to measure how patients’ perception of their physical and mental health has changed over time. These perceptions can be improved by:

  • Conducting annual wellness visits
  • Screening patients for falls risk and developing a falls risk reduction plan for patients who screen positive
  • Documenting the screening (and falls risk reduction plan if applicable) and including the appropriate CPT II code on your claim
  • Asking patients if they have experienced urinary incontinence
  • Conducting medication reconciliation for appropriate usage with patients

You can view HOS survey questions here.

Visit the links below for more information about these surveys.

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