Patient Survey Says: SBUMC Room Service Ranks Best Among LI And UHC Hospitals
PATIENT SURVEY SAYS:
STONY BROOK, NY, July 11, 2007 – Seven years ago, Stony Brook University Medical Center faced a patient satisfaction crisis in its food service program. Press Ganey, the health care industry’s leading independent vendor of satisfaction measurement and improvement services, reported that Stony Brook’s inpatient food services ranked in the 3rd percentile range when compared to hospitals in its national database.
These numbers were not acceptable to Administrator of Hospitality Services, Suzette Smookler, who joined Stony Brook in 2000, and aggressively sought ways to improve the delivery of food service. Following incremental improvements over the years, the most dramatic change was implemented in May 2006, when the hospital embarked on a hotel-like model for food service delivery. Stony Brook’s “Distinguished Dining” is a room service program that empowers patients to order what they want, when they want it, in accordance with medical dietary orders.
One year after the program was introduced, with 17 different menus, a professional call center staffed with room service operators to take patient orders, and room service “ambassadors” clad in a black vest, trousers and white shirt, who explain menus and deliver food promptly, SBUMC is setting the standard for hospitals on Long Island. Press Ganey patient satisfaction scores now rank the Hospital’s Distinguished Dining food service in the 99th percentile among Long Island hospitals and University HealthSystem Consortium (UHC) Hospitals, a benchmark comparator group among academic medical centers. It has improved to the 90th percentile when compared to hospitals in Press Ganey national database.
“Research has shown that sound nutrition and good eating habits directly affect patients’ health and speed of recovery,” says Smookler. “This is why the Distinguished Dining pays careful attention to preparing the finest quality ingredients to our patients’ specifications and delivers them fresh to the patient room within 45 minutes.”