Fielding the Survey

Managing Marketing | The Patient Survey

Your practice management software may include a feature that allows you to create and send an instant electronic survey to patients. Make sure you review the questions in that survey to ensure they’re relevant to your practice and your patients. If they aren’t, see if it’s possible to customize the questions and send them to a limited group of specific patients.

If that’s not an option, several online survey vendors allow you to create a free, customized survey that can be shared with patients via email so they can complete it anonymously. While this option requires some investment of staff time, it allows for complete customization of questions and possible responses. Keep in mind that basic surveys are generally free and that lengthier questionnaires, or in-depth reporting of results, typically involve additional costs.

Determine whether the vendor who fields your survey is a HIPAA business associate and, if so, make sure you have a business associate agreement in place.

Make sure the email message that transmits the survey includes a due date for responding and that it offers patients the opportunity to opt out of future electronic communications.