Hospital nursing satisfaction with clinical laboratory services: a College of American Pathologists Q-Probes study of 162 institutions

Bruce A Jones, Molly K Walsh, Stephen G Ruby
Archives of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine 2006, 130 (12): 1756-61

CONTEXT: Monitoring customer satisfaction is an important and useful quality improvement tool and is required of most clinical laboratories in the United States.

OBJECTIVE: To survey the level of nursing satisfaction with hospital clinical laboratory services.

DESIGN: Participating laboratories provided information regarding laboratory demographics and practices. These laboratories then surveyed hospital nursing personnel regarding their level of satisfaction with defined aspects of laboratory service.

SETTING: College of American Pathologists Q-Probes laboratory quality improvement study in 162 hospital laboratories.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Nursing overall satisfaction score (ranging from 1, not satisfied, to 5, very satisfied) and satisfaction scores for 13 specific aspects of clinical laboratory services.

RESULTS: One hundred sixty-two institutions submitted data from a total of 7033 nursing surveys. The overall satisfaction score for all institutions ranged from 2.5 to 4.6. The median overall score for all participants was 3.9 (10th percentile, 3.2; 90th percentile, 4.2). Nursing personnel were most satisfied with the accuracy of test results, phlebotomy courtesy toward patients and nursing staff, and notification of abnormal results. They were least satisfied with stat test turnaround time, laboratory management responsiveness and accessibility, phlebotomy responsiveness to service requests, and routine test turnaround time. The most important aspect of laboratory service reported by nursing personnel was stat test turnaround time.

CONCLUSIONS: Most nursing personnel are satisfied with the clinical laboratory services that are provided to the patients in their care. Although test result accuracy is very highly regarded, there is room for improvement in several aspects of service, particularly in test turnaround time and laboratory management accessibility and responsiveness.

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