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Commonly Asked Questions


Quality Data:

We’re sharing our medical results and service data with you because we want to help you evaluate a quality healthcare experience and make informed decisions about where you choose to seek your or a family members’ care.

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Outcomes Commonly Asked Questions

  • Q: Do you keep track of the variability as well as the averages? For example, if 95.4% of heart attack patients are given aspirin at arrival, what is the standard deviation as well?
    A: We track variability among clinical services and nursing units and analyze all cases that do not receive recommended treatments to identify areas for improvement, such as documentation. In addition, data are monitored over time to compare historical performance to current performance and to compare our performance to internal targets and external benchmarks including local hospitals, other academic medical centers and national rates.
  • Q: What is the connection between patient volume and successful outcomes?
    A: Hospitals that perform greater numbers of high-risk procedures typically experience better patient outcomes, most likely because treating more patients leads to more experienced care providers. Our high-risk treatment volumes are at or above the national average.

    High-Risk Treatment Volumes UH Volume
    (submitted 6/2007)
    James Volume
    (submitted 6/2007)
    Coronary Artery Bypass Graft (CABG) 480 N/A 450
    Percutaneous Coronary Intervention (PCI) 1290 N/A 400
    Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA) Repair 75 N/A 50
    Esophagectomy 48* 48* 13
    Pancreatic Resection 66* 66* 11
    Bariatric Surgery 236 N/A 100
    Aortic Valve Replacement (AVR) 120 N/A 120
    * The Leapfrog Group rules state that adjoining hospitals can report the same volume as a combined number for high-risk procedures if they both perform the procedure
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Service Commonly Asked Questions

  • Q: How does Ohio State's Wexner Medical Center resolve issues with unsatisfied patients and visitors?
    A: Although we hope no issues arise during a patient’s stay with us, we realize it can happen. We encourage patients and families to bring anything to our attention that will help improve their experience, and we try to address those concerns before they leave the hospital. Patients should feel free to talk to anyone on their care team about their dissatisfaction. The nurse manager is available to help, and there are Customer Service and Guest Services departments that can intervene when needed. Our goal is to have all dissatisfaction resolved in a timely way so it does not affect your overall healthcare experience.
  • Q: What steps is Ohio State's Medical Center taking to improve patient satisfaction?
    A: We want to make sure every patient and family member has the best experience possible, so we are focused on providing personalized care and service to each patient and family member. We make this happen by encouraging open lines of communication between patients, families and the care team. We want our patients and their families to be active partners in their care.

    A couple of ways that we’re helping communications and providing a personalized touch are through Personalized Daily Patient Schedules and Care Team Rosters. The Personalized Daily Patient Schedules are an agenda of what the patient can expect for the day. Care team members handwrite updates on the schedule, and the patient and family members are encouraged to ask questions. The Care Team Roster contains names, titles, descriptions and pictures of the doctors, residents, interns and other members of a patient’s care team. It enables the patient to identify who is on their care team and provides another avenue of communication.

    In our Emergency Departments, many doctors give their patients a business card that includes their name and a phone number to call if the patients have any questions after they leave the hospital.

    In many areas, nurse managers frequently check on the patient and staff members check on their patients hourly, which improves the quality of care provided to our patients and gives them the opportunity to talk to their care team and ask questions. In other areas, large banners and signs are placed in high-traffic areas to remind care team members and visitors to keep the noise level down to help our patients get the rest they need to get better.

    Additionally, the Wexner Medical Center at Ohio State has an advisory committee comprised of community, business and Medical Center leaders charged with providing direction in developing a culture of service excellence in all areas of Ohio State's Wexner Medical Center. Each hospital also has its own Service Council comprised of front-line staff dedicated to improving customer service.
  • Q: What does this survey information tell you?
    A: While Ohio State's Medical Center is always applying the newest and most effective clinical care to our patients, these surveys tell us that patients expect more than just the best medical care. Our patients expect to be engaged as a partner in their care and to be treated as unique and special individuals. Asking questions about the patient’s entire experience helps us measure our successes and identify areas for improvement.
  • Q: How many patients do you survey?
    A: Every month, The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center surveys more than 2,000 patients from our various care settings. We maintain very strict surveying standards to help us accurately measure our success as well as to identify areas of improvement.
  • Q: If Ohio State’s Medical Center posts an overall satisfaction score of 72 percent, does that mean 28 percent of your patients are unsatisfied with their care?
    A: Not necessarily. These scores are the percentage of patients who give us “top box” scores. Top box scores are the top one or two choices that patients can choose from to answer a question. For example, the percentage of 9s or 10s from a 0 to 10 scale or the percentage of always responses on a never, sometimes, usually, always scale. By focusing on top box scores, we are representing those patients who are extremely satisfied. The majority of the patients who don’t rate us with top box scores still give us positive ratings.
  • Q: Doesn’t Ohio State’s Medical Center care for patients with more severe conditions and less financial means than other local hospitals? Does this negatively impact patient satisfaction scores?
    A: As an academic medical center, the Wexner Medical Center at Ohio State works on the leading edge of clinical care, providing treatments and services to critically ill patients that are often not available at other hospitals. In addition, we also provide healthcare services to greater numbers of patients with limited or no financial means; this is one of the many contributions we make to our community. Regardless of a patient’s severity of illness or ability to pay, we strive to provide the highest level of personalized care.
  • Q: What customer service training are your medical students and residents provided?
    A: Professionalism, inclusive of customer service and interpersonal skills, is a high priority at both our hospitals as well as our College of Medicine. As part of their education, our medical students interact with volunteers who present scripted illnesses in mock exam rooms fitted with video cameras, observation windows and listening devices. Faculty observe the interactions, students review video playback with faculty instruction and the volunteers offer assessments. This medical training program has been instrumental in helping to build interpersonal skills in “real-life” situations.
  • Q: How do I make a suggestion to Ohio State's Medical Center about improving patient satisfaction?
    A: We’re always interested in learning how we can improve your experience. Please share your feedback with anyone on the care team while you or your family member is in the hospital. We want you to leave here satisfied. You may also receive a survey after your visit, so please share your ideas on this survey. You may also visit the Contact Us section of our Web site.
  • Q: What special services or amenities have you added to improve the patient experience?
    A: Recent enhancements include expanded cafeteria hours, wireless Internet access and support for CarePages, a Web site that allows patients and families to share information, photos and messages of support. We’re also providing our patients with Personalized Daily Patient Schedules and Care Team Rosters. The Personalized Daily Patient Schedules are an agenda of what the patient can expect for the day. Care team members handwrite updates on the schedule, and the patient and family members are encouraged to ask questions. The Care Team Roster contains names, titles, descriptions and pictures of the doctors, residents, interns and other members of a patient’s care team. It enables the patient to identify who is on their care team and provides another avenue of communication.
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Safety Commonly Asked Questions

  • Q: What questions should I ask my doctor or nurse?
    A: We welcome any questions or concerns that you may have regarding any treatments, medicines or procedures that we may perform while you’re in our care. A good resource to review is on The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality Web site. They have developed a variety of questions to ask your care team based on your needs.
  • Q: What precautions does Ohio State's Medical Center take to keep me safe during my stay?
    A: While we take many precautions to ensure your safety, below are a few specific safety measures taken:

    Medication Safety
    When you enter the hospital, we ask for a complete and accurate list of your current home medications (drug name, dosage, frequency and route) and compare this list with any other medications you may be given during your stay. This ensures that there are not any omissions, duplications, drug interactions or incorrect spelling or doses of your medicines. This process is called medication reconciliation. We also use Specialty Practice Pharmacists, who specialize in key areas of patient care such as surgery, critical care, infectious diseases and cardiac care, and are extremely knowledgeable about various patient populations.

    Infection Prevention
    Protecting patients from hospital-acquired infections is a primary patient safety goal, and we have an ongoing program to prevent infections in patients. In compliance with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Hospital Infections Program, the Wexner Medical Center at Ohio State identifies and monitors individuals who may have an increased risk for infection, such as patients with invasive devices like ventilators or central venous catheters, or those who have undergone an operative procedure. We also practice appropriate hand hygiene before and after patient contact, comply with isolation precautions and provide clean environments; all are key components to infection prevention.

    Fall Prevention
    We conduct complete patient assessments at admission and throughout the hospital stay to determine if patients are at risk for falls. After the assessment, if a patient is determined to be at a high risk for falling, a yellow band is placed on the patient’s wrist and a yellow tag is hung outside of the patient’s door. These precautions let any member of the care team know that the patient is susceptible for falls. These patients are also reminded to ask for help getting out of bed.

    Surgery Safety
    The care team at Ohio State's Medical Center follows a multiple-step process, involving checks and double-checks, to verify that the correct surgery will be performed at the correct site on the correct patient. In our process, the correct procedure and site are determined at the time the surgery is scheduled. On the day of the surgery, the surgical site is verified both with the patient and on the medical record; the site is then marked. Once in the operating room, a time-out is taken before the procedure begins to double-check the accuracy of the patient, surgery site and procedural information.

    Multidisciplinary Rounds
    A team of physicians, nurses and other key caregivers develops a list of short-term goals for each patient as part of a daily care plan. This approach has reduced hospital stays while improving patient safety and satisfaction, and it enables patients to be an active partner in their care.
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