Improving Patient Satisfaction through Patient and Family Centered Care (PFCC)

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patient satisfactionAs the US Healthcare industry makes its transition from fee-for-service to a value-based model, many hospitals and medical practices are implementing strategies to improve quality, safety, outcomes, and patient satisfaction while attempting to reduce costs. Patient and Family Centered Care (PFCC) is one approach that is helping healthcare organizations transform the delivery of patient care.

What are the Guiding Principles of Patient and Family Centered Care (PFCC)?

At first glance, it may seem that Patient and Family Centered Care should be a standard of care in every practice. However, this approach to healthcare often requires an organizational culture shift. The purpose of PFCC is to deliver care with respect and dignity, through improved and enhanced communication by building partnerships between healthcare providers, patients, and families. It is founded on the belief that the family plays an imperative role in ensuring the health and well-being of patients.

PFCC recognizes that emotional, social, and developmental support is essential to the health of patients. Therefore, the principles of PFCC help shape organizational policies, programs, facility design, and staff day-to-day interactions. The benefits of adopting a PFCC culture can result in enhanced quality and safety, greater family and patient satisfaction, better health outcomes and improved financial performance.

The practice of Patient and Family Centered Care is guided by four core concepts, as provided by the IPFCC:


PFCC Principles for Patient Satisfaction

The core principles of PFCC have been defined and endorsed by organizations such as the Joint Commission, the Institute of Medicine (IOM), the Institute for Patient and Family-Centered Care (IPFCC), the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), and the American College of Emergency Physicians. These organizations recognize the importance of collaboration, communication, and the involvement of patients and families in healthcare discussions and decisions. When patients are actively engaged in their healthcare, they are more likely to be compliant and have better outcomes.

Hospitals and medical practices who have implemented the concepts of Patient and Family Centered Care have seen significant improvements such as reduced costs, enhanced patient satisfaction, better management of chronic and acute illnesses, improved continuity of care, and reduced hospital re-admissions. PFCC is a win-win approach to delivering comprehensive quality healthcare and improving family and patient satisfaction.

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