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Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2012 Oct;147(4):671-7. Epub 2012 Jul 2.

Consumer assessment of healthcare providers and systems surgical care survey: benefits and challenges.

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Division of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, Department of Surgery, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina, USA.



To describe the feasibility and initial results of the implementation of a continuous quality improvement project using the newly available Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems Surgical Care Survey (S-CAHPS), in a small cohort of otolaryngology-head and neck surgery practices.


Prospective observational study using a newly validated health care consumer survey.


Two community-based and 2 university-based otolaryngology-head and neck surgery outpatient clinic practices.


Fourteen board-certified otolaryngology, head and neck surgeons from 4 practice sites voluntarily participated in this project. All adult patients scheduled for surgery during a 12-month period were asked to complete the S-CAHPS survey through an electronic data capture (EDC) system 7 to 28 days after surgery. The surgeons were not directly involved in administration or collection of survey data.


Three sites successfully implemented the S-CAHPS project. A 39.9% response rate was achieved for the cohort of surgical patients entered into the EDC system. While most patients rated their surgeons very high (mean of 9.5 or greater out of 10), subanalysis revealed there is variability among sites and surgeons in communication practices. From these data, a potential surgeon Quality Improvement report was developed that highlights priority areas to improve surgeon-patient rapport.


The S-CAHPS survey can be successfully implemented in most otolaryngology practices, and our initial work holds promise for how the survey can be best deployed and analyzed for the betterment of both the surgeon and the patient.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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