SAN ANTONIO, Tex.—A nurse-directed independent survey for patient feedback can inform measurable improvements in patient education and satisfaction survey scores, reported Amber Williams, BS, RN, OCN®, in an oral presentation at the ONS 41st Annual Congress.1

Patients receiving chemotherapy primarily receive information about side effects and symptom management from ambulatory chemotherapy nurses, including home care instructions. Press Ganey patient satisfaction surveys are designed to measure patient satisfaction and allow for comparisons with national databases of survey results. Patients are randomly selected to receive the survey after discharge from hospital.

Survey scores related to home care instructions at the Ohio State University James Cancer Hospital, in Columbus, Ohio, were lower than the national average in January 2015. Nurses developed and administered a unit survey to determine how to patients’ perception of the instructions they received for home care and managing side effects. This survey was administered in February 2015.

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“The purpose of the unit survey was to measure patient satisfaction (ie, what information do patients want and need to learn?) and consistent education (what information do nurses need to teach),” Williams explained.

Of 126 completed surveys returned, 23 included suggestions on how to improve educational materials. Survey results suggested patients wanted more clear information regarding diarrhea, constipation, rash, fatigue, nausea, mucositis, GERD, pain, home infusion monitoring/care, chemotherapy exposure precautions, and when to call the oncologist,were areas to target for improvement.

Postimplementation Press Ganey scores were monitored. Three months after nurses began using the improved educational materials, the Press Ganey scores increased from 90.9 to 93.8 for instructions and from 85 to 96 for side effects.

These improvements in Press Ganey scores suggest patient feedback is an important component to improving the care of oncology patients.


1. Williams A, Bryant S, Fenner K, Sherer J. Home care instructions: results from an ambulatory patient survey. Oral presentation at: Oncology Nursing Society 41st Annual Congress; April 29-May 1, 2016; San Antonio, TX.