Saturday, April 23, 2016

Bring Back Trust

When the Trust is Gone

I recently bought pens from a company I have been doing business with for years.  The price was right, I was promised extra’s and it would come in time for a fair we were holding. 

They came on time, the day before the fair, but when I opened the box, they were the wrong color, missing the promised free logo and a word was spelled incorrectly.  I was angry and immediately called the company with my concerns.  There was a promise to call back the next day.  Five days later and still nothing.  Now it’s not the error that has me angry.  That could have been handled with an apology and explanation.  It’s the lack of sincerity to make it right.  The disrespect of not calling back and ironically, where should I buy my pens now?

When we use the healthcare system and things go wrong, there is a similar dilemma.  If I don’t “trust” the people caring for me, where do I go?  Some people might say that after a bad outcome they don’t want others to suffer the same thing.  I know in my case, after my son died because of his medical care, I needed to trust again.  I hear in many people’s plea for answers, courtesy and respect, they are also looking to trust the system and the people who work in it.

Customer service has come a long way in some hospitals and throughout the healthcare system.  But learning to navigate it is troubling.  Some of my most recent calls are asking who the patient’s family should call to get answers to questions or a response to concerns.  The Patient Advocate, Patient Representative and now the Patient Experience Department.  Just try calling and asking for customer service and see who you get.

Feel free to share your experience.