Free-text patient experience data inform service development

Mike Bracher
BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology 2020 July 4
Understanding patients' experiences of treatment and care is essential to effective service development, and is therefore a common topic of investigation for clinicians and health services researchers. For service development, different kinds of investigation may be useful for a different purpose. Closed measures of patient satisfaction (e.g. rating scales) are useful in providing reproducible measures in specified domains; however, they are often limited both by the scope of predefined questions, and the level of detail they provide on processes affecting reported outcomes. Free-text data are therefore often collected alongside such measures, in order to provide further descriptive detail on patient experience, and/or identify emergent issues not covered by closed questions (Bracher et al. BMJ Open. 2016. 6:e011830. https://doi:10.1136/bmjopen-2016-011830).

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