Effective communication enhances the patients’ endoscopy experience

Abstract

Background

Undergoing an endoscopy is a stressful experience for patients.

Aims

To audit the endoscopy pathway to improve patient satisfaction.

Methods

A prospective survey of endoscopy patients to identify system improvements that were then implemented.

Results

The survey was performed before (N = 71) and after (N = 60) process improvements identified by the initial survey. Information provision and staff communication skills were identified for optimisation. Patient anxiety at home was significantly reduced (median 2 vs. 1, p < 0.01). Education of endoscopy staff significantly improved the quality of information provided before and after the procedure with regard to sedation (median 4 vs. 5, p < 0.01), discomfort (median 4 vs. 5, p < 0.01), complications (28 vs. 82 %, p < 0.01), findings (89 vs. 100 %, p < 0.01) and follow-up (73 vs. 90 %, p = 0.015). Gloucester Comfort Scores during endoscopy improved (median 1 vs. 0, p < 0.01) without increasing sedation levels. Patient feelings of invasion/trauma significantly decreased. Overall 95 % of patients were satisfied.

Conclusion

Structured information leaflets and improved staff communication skills reduce anxiety and enhance patients’ experiences. They are now standard operating procedures.

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Correspondence to D. P. Toomey.

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Appendix 2

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Toomey, D.P., Hackett-Brennan, M., Corrigan, G. et al. Effective communication enhances the patients’ endoscopy experience. Ir J Med Sci 185, 203–214 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11845-015-1270-0

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Keywords

  • Endoscopy
  • Colonoscopy
  • Consent
  • Education