Massachusetts General Hospital Patient Care Services
Excellence Every Day


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Excellence Every Day represents an MGH commitment to providing the highest quality, safest care that meets or exceeds all standards set by the hospital and external organizations.
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A Focus on the Patient Experience
Quick Links: Feedback from Patients & Families | Reports | Best Practices & Tools | Resources for Leaders | Resources

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"People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel."

-Maya Angelou

All day, every day, we focus on creating the very best experience for our patients, their families, visitors, and colleagues.   
As we celebrate Patient Experience Week next week, it’s important to recognize that every one of us, regardless of our role, shapes the patient experience.  As our Mass General icare model reminds us, we are all responsible for fostering a warm, welcoming environment and we strive always for excellence in our interactions.  Consistently embracing the elements of the icare model helps us to demonstrate how much we care and can leave a lasting impression.

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I communicate in a warm and welcoming manner.

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I advocate on behalf of patients, families, colleagues and myself.

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I respect and embrace differing values, opinions, and viewpoints.

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I empathize and acknowledge the feelings of others.

During Patient Experience Week, we elevate the voices of our patients – helping to remind us that every encounter and experience matters:

  • The staff listened to me – they respected me and treated me like a person.
  • The compassion and sincere concern of the staff…they made me feel like a person and not just a patient.
  • They always say “hello” to you.  That makes a person feel good.  They ask how you’re feeling.  They really makes you feel welcomed.

Supporting the MGH mission statement, guided by the needs of our patients and their families, we are here to help those in need, and whether we provide patient care directly or indirectly, every one of us impacts the patient experience. Thank you for all you do each and every day. Please join us in celebrating Patient Experience Week April 22nd through April 26th.


Huddle Message Archive

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We all shape the patient experience...

“Advocate.” click here



Huddle Messages are short talking point about service best practices. They can be shared at team meeting or discussed among colleagues. Most importantly, they provide a reminder of how each of us in our respective roles can positively impact the patient experience here at MGH.


Huddle Message Archive


family photoWhen patients come to the hospital, they have an experience that crosses boundaries, buildings, departments and disciplines. While we think most often of the part of the experience we are most connected with, patients see their time with us as a whole.  The experience begins with the drive to MGH and ends when they arrive back at their home or at the next level of care. 

The patient experience also includes all aspects of the care we provide, including Quality, Safety and Service.  All aspects need to be attended to in our daily work.  That is why so many of our quality, safety and service initiatives are linked – because although we think of these areas separately as we work on them, there is really only ONE patient experience.  At MGH, our goal is to achieve Excellence Every Day in each of these three areas.

Providing an excellent patient experience also involves every member of the team. Every one of us can help shape the experience, regardless of our role.

Finally, the patient experience most often includes families and other loved ones.  As we care for patients, we must also take these key people into account, including them, being sensitive to their needs and their involvement.  In other words, we strive for a patient experience that is patient and family centered. 

This page outlines efforts, resources and tools that help support the provision of an outstanding experience for our patients and families. Click here to see select samples of how MGH staff impact the patient experience.


The Patient Satisfaction Survey ProcessHCAHPS logo

How do we know we are providing the best experience for our patients? The Patient Satisfaction Surveys show us by completing a picture of the overall patient experience.
These surveys provide valuable data and comments on how our care and service was perceived by those we serve.  We can use this data to see which areas are our strengths
and which need improvement.

Here are some additional resources:

  • “Patient Experience Surveys at MGH" poster
  • Patient Experience Sharepoint site This is a central site for leaders to access patient experience reports and other resources pertinent to inpatient and ambulatory care settings that are posted. (internal access only)
  • Quality Data Management (QDM) Portal This portal is available for leaders to get the most current survey results for inpatient and ambulatory care settings. To gain access contact Mirta Nadjmi. (internal access only)

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We use data to improve the patient experience. The data helps us see how we are doing on important aspects of quality, safety and service. We also use data to target our focus and efforts. Here are some of the data on these key aspects of the patient experience.

Adult Inpatient Reports (internal access only)

  • MGH HCAHPS Dashboard: reflecting adult hospital patient experience survey results by Composite Measure. Shows results over time compared to targets and national percentiles.This report can be filtered by Composite Measure, Service & Unit.
  • HCAHPS Question Summary Dashboard: reflecting adult hospital question level patient experience survey results for each composite measure over time and compared to targets and national percentiles. The structure and format of this report are comparable to the above.
  • HCAHPS Composite by Unit: reflecting adult hospital patient experience survey results by patient care unit. This report shows how units’ results on a measure or set of measures over a defined period of time, and can be filtered in a similar fashion to the reports above.

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patient care imageOnce an aspect of care is identified as needing improvement, we deploy best practices to help address the issues.  At MGH, we use best practices that have been proven to work over time in hospitals like ours.  Using an evidence based approach helps to ensure that our time and effort are well spent and productive.  Here are some of the best practices currently be used...

Relationship Based Care

Relationship Based Care Slide

In the Literature

Addressing Quietness on Units
A quiet environment offers a healing environment for our patients.  Noise is such a stressor for patients that it is proven to be detrimental to their healing process.  For many patients, sleep is an important part of their recovery.  We need to do everything possible to ensure that our patients get as much rest as they possibly can.

Discharge Phone Calls
The Discharge Phone Call program at Mass General ensures that our patients receive a call from a nurse on the patient care unit from which they were discharged.

Here is some information about our program:

  • Calls ensure that patients make it home safely and have the resources they need
  • Nurses call patients within 24-48 hrs of discharge
  • 75,000+ calls made per year (1,400+ calls each week)
  • Calls prevent readmissions and lead to higher patient satisfaction


For more information about Discharge Phone Calls, please contact senior project manager Cindy Sprogis

Service Recovery Program
When a service breakdown occurs, patients expect us to show that we care by listening, empathizing, acknowledging the situation and by doing the right thing.  They don’t expect us to be perfect, but they do expect us to offer options or to fix things when they go wrong.

Patient & Family Advisory Councils (PFACs)
The MGH Patient Family Advisory Councils (PFAC) provide a formal communication vehicle for patients and families to take an active role in improving the patient experience at the MGH.

The PFACS at MGH collaborate with departments throughout the hospital in order to:

  • Develop programs to promote the patient experience
  • Share best practices across the community
  • Enhance the partnership between patients, families, staff, physicians and administration

MGH / MGPO PFACs include:

Patient & Family Advisory Council in action

Patient  & Family Notebook and Discharge Information Envelope
The Patient & Family Notebook facilitates patient participation in their care by:

  • Helping patients know more about their care team
  • Providing patients with opportunity to ask questions of their care team

The Discharge Information Envelope includes:

  • A “Going Home Checklist” which helps patients prepare for discharge
  • A place for patients and families to collect important information needed after hospitalization

Communication Boards & Patient Room Boards
Communication boards are a tool for each nursing unit to educate staff about key quality, safety and service data. They depict what indicators are being focused on for improvement and progress made towards goals. They can also include verbatim comments from patients and resources on best practices.

In Room White Boards are a communication tool found in each patient room, The white boards identify several members of the patient’s care team, include a goal for the day, anticipated discharge date and provide space for the patient & their family to ask questions.

Hourly & Leader Rounding
Hourly safety rounds are conducted on patient care units by nurses on an hourly basis to address patient safety and needs. By conducting hourly rounding, patient needs can be met proactively, resulting in improved quality outcomes, patient and nurse satisfaction.

MGH utilizes a model for conducting hourly rounding consisting of 4 P’s of safety:

  • Presence
  • Pain
  • Position
  • Personal Hygiene

Leader rounding is a way for nurse leaders to ensure that hourly rounding is being practiced on their units. It also gives them the opportunity to address patients concerns and provide real-time feedback to the nursing team, including what’s working well and what can be improved.

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RESOURCES FOR LEADERS (internal access only)

The best way to improve MGH’s patient satisfaction ratings is for every unit and department that are measured on the survey to work on and improve their results.  This approach to improvement allows for each area to review the results from their own patients and families and select interventions or strategies that are tailored to address their improvement needs.  Here are resources for units or departments to plan for service improvement:

Magnet Improvement: Planning
Here are some resources that help units and departments make effective plans for improvement.

Excellence Every Day Video
Improving service takes leadership and it is supported when every member of the team can see how they can help to contribute to the patient experience.  Here is a video produced at MGH that helps to communicate our vision and our roles.


Excellence in Action
The Excellence in Action Program seeks to recognize and reward those individuals and/or teams who have been highlighted in e-mail or letters of commendation received by administration, principally those delivered to Dr. Slavin or the Office of Patient Advocacy.

Patient Care Services Awards & Recognition Program
Patient Care Services (PCS) celebrates and supports those employees whose daily practice demonstrates excellence in care and services to patients. By partnering with patients and families, PCS has developed a comprehensive award and recognition program that celebrates clinical and support staff in their ability to serve patients and families of the MGH.
click here for more...

Annual Service Excellence Awards
MGH’s Annual Service Excellence Awards are meant to support the organization’s efforts to improve the patient experience and the ratings given to us by our patients and families.  Awards are targeted at reinforcing achievement of goals or significant improvement in metrics and at recognizing outstanding work by teams and leaders related to patient experience.

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Service Excellence Department Team Members

Sharon Badgett-Lichten, LICSW
Senior Organizational Development Specialist

Cindy Sprogis
Senior Project Manager

Mary Cramer
Executive Director, Organizational Effectiveness & Chief Experience Officer

Chris Wilterdink
Project Manager

The Office of Patient Advocacy

The Office of Patient Advocacy (OPA) is responsible for managing the hospital's patient commendation and complaint process. (617) 726-3370 |

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Joint Commission logo

"The Joint Commission has made several efforts, both past and present, to better understand individual patients' needs and to provide guidance for organizations working to address those needs.  The Joint Commission first focused on studying language, culture, and health literacy issues, but later expanded its scope of work to include the broader issue of effective communication, cultural competence, and patient- and family-centered care.  No longer considered to be simply a patient's right, effective communication is now accepted as an essential component of quality care and patient safety.  Additional studies show that incorporating the concepts of cultural competence and patient- and family-centeredness into the care process can increase patient satisfaction and adherence with treatment."

(Effective Communication, Cultural Competence, Patient- and Family-Centered Care: A Roadmap for Hospitals,
published by The Joint Commission , 2010)

Magnet Recognition

Magnet_logoThe American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) requires Magnet-designated organizations to track nationally-benchmarked nursing sensitive indicators (NSIs) to continually inform improvement efforts related enhance patient outcomes. Examples of NSIs include, but are not limited to: patient falls, hospital-acquired pressure ulcers, blood stream infections, ventilator-associated pneumonia, and restraint use.





Excellence Every Day represents an MGH commitment to providing the highest quality, safest care that meets or exceeds all standards set by the hospital and external organizations.

If you have questions or suggestions related to the EED portal, please contact Jess Beaham at (617) 726-3109 or via email at

UPDATED 4.15.19


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