Discovery papers

Addressing Top HCAHPS Challenges

Many organizations feel that their challenges are unique and that they are on their own in developing ways to overcome them. At HealthStream, we have found that many hospitals actually face similar challenges despite having different patient populations or being in different parts of the country.

HealthStream has used various surveys to collect information from healthcare leaders and employees on their organizations’ top HCAHPS challenges. Our analysis of 1,800 responses has shown that the top three challenges in regard to improving HCAHPS performance lie with:

Consistency and Sustainability

With the transition from traditional patient satisfaction surveys to HCAHPS, many hospitals are challenged by meeting the expectations of consistency set by the HCAHPS survey. So, it is not surprising that one in every five healthcare employees indicated that they struggle with consistency and/or sustainability.


One in every seven respondents to HealthStream’s survey expressed difficulties in ensuring consistent and effective communication both among employees, and between employees and patients.

Understanding the Survey and Reports

As part of our coaching engagements with healthcare organizations, HealthStream coaches ask that all leaders take the HCAHPS survey (or at the least a patient survey applicable to their department) as if they were patients in their hospital and ask them to take their staff through the same exercise.

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