Patient Relations Coordinator
DEPARTMENT: Risk Management
1. Position Purpose
The primary purpose of the position is to respond to patient grievances and complaints, act as a frontline contact, address concerns, and facilitate and/or coordinate resolutions.
The Patient Relations Coordinator helps ensure that patients and their families have a positive experience at the medical center. They work closely with all departments to achieve this goal.
This position requires an individual with excellent verbal and written communication skills, initiative, a commitment to customer service, and the ability to work collaboratively to facilitate enhancement of our services and complaint resolution
The Patient Relations Coordinator responds to grievances, inquiries, complaints, and lost property issues; maintains the customer service database, participates in frontline problem resolution through patient rounds and interviews. In complaint and lost property investigation and resolution, the patient relations’ representative staff interacts with all departments and supervisory levels within the Medical Center.
These responsibilities require an individual who possesses effective communication skills, a responsible and organized work style, initiative, and a commitment to customer service.
3. Nature of Challenges and Problems
The Patient Relations Coordinator will face challenges both externally and internally. Skill and tack will be needed to handle difficult situations. Persuasion and persistence will be needed in investigating and seeking resolution to reported complaints and lost property.
To be successful, our client must be perceived as an organization that is responsive and provides excellent care and customer service. This requires a commitment to service at every level within the organization, a monitoring system that is sensitive to customer opinion, an effective complaint handling system., a receptiveness and responsiveness to feedback and problem-solving, recognition that poor service is most often due to inefficient or unfriendly systems, and an ongoing commitment to making changes that respond to customer needs and expectations.
An emphasis on preventing problems and identifying and solving them when they occur is imperative. An efficient system for handling complaints saves money both by averting potential legal actions and turning unhappy customers into satisfied customers with positive outcomes.
The functions of Patient Relations have been successful with the staff serving a critical role. Physicians and employees throughout the Medical Center have come to rely on this function. It will be an ongoing challenge to communicate that customer service is everyone’s job, which every staff member represents our client in the mind of the customer, and that professional, compassionate communication, and problem resolution is everyone’s responsibility.
4. Functions Performed
· Responds to patient grievances in accordance with Medical Center policy for complaint and grievance management. This includes but is not limited to investigation of complaints/concerns of patients, relatives and the public regarding quality and/or delivery of care and services, and problems and concerns identified by physicians and staff relating to all areas of patient care and service. Confers with appropriate staff and physicians and/or managers on all above concerns and complaints. Includes issue clarification, some chart review, policy and procedure review, interviewing, consulting and/or interacting with all levels of staff, departments, patients and their families.
· Suggests corrective action with all involved parties. Includes participation in meetings concerning resolution and writing summary letters and correspondence.
· Reviews patient satisfaction results and investigates patient complaints received on surveys. Confers appropriate staff, directors, and/or physicians to obtain information and/or resolution. Assures timely response and follow-up to patients.
· Conducts daily rounds to support the nursing units customer service programs
· Identifies trends in patient comments and complaints and makes recommendations to improve service delivery to patient families and the community to appropriate department administration or physicians.
· Participates in assigned and/or appointed ad-hoc and standing committees or projects relating to the patient care, satisfaction and hospital services.
· Provides quarterly reports and other reports are requested.
· Works closely with Risk Management to report and resolve issues that may result in potentially compensable events. Interacts with and reports direct information as appropriate with Quality Management.
· Supports the Alta Bates Summit Medical Center Service Excellence Program and serves as a Service Ambassador.
5. Position Requirements
· Excellent communication skills including friendly manner/voice, active listening skills, bilingual preferred.
· Excellent writing skills
· Ability to instill confidence through a patient, calm demeanor, professional appearance, and manner.
· Information technology skills including: computer literacy, data entry, IBM based software, file maintenance.
· Ability to utilize conflict resolution techniques and defuses escalating situations.
· Bachelor’s degree preferred.
· Experience in healthcare based customer service performed.
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