CAHPS Research Meetings
AHRQ occasionally hosts research meetings that bring together researchers, subject matter experts and key stakeholders to focus on specific topics of interest related to CAHPS surveys.
Patient Experience, Patient Safety, and Provider Well-Being: Associations and Paths for Quality Improvement (October 2023)
This open-invitation virtual research meeting explored how data from CAHPS surveys and other patient experience information can improve patient safety and the well-being of the healthcare workforce.
Speakers shared findings on these four major topics:
- How exposure to, and use of, information on patient experience affects the well-being of providers and staff.
- The relationship between patient safety culture and patient experience.
- How better communication with patients can improve patient safety and lower malpractice risks.
- What patient narratives tell us about opportunities for improving patient safety.
Donald Berwick, M.D., M.P.P., president emeritus and senior fellow at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, delivered the keynote presentation on “How Improving Patient Experience Can Help Us Achieve the Quintuple Aim in Healthcare.”
Assessing Patient Experience for Insights into Enhancing Equity in Healthcare (September 2022)
In this open-invitation virtual research meeting, CAHPS survey users, researchers, healthcare organization leaders, and others gathered online to explore how CAHPS surveys shed light on disparities in patient experience and how improved measurement can advance healthcare equity. This meeting explored the following five questions:
- What have CAHPS and other patient experience survey data taught us about disparities in patient experience?
- How can we better identify different groups in the patient population and ensure that their experiences with care are represented in the survey data?
- What information and insights do CAHPS and other patient experience surveys provide to support healthcare equity improvement efforts?
- How can survey results be analyzed and reported to identify effective evidence-based interventions that can be developed and implemented to promote equity in patient experience?
- What are barriers to enhancing equity through patient experience measurement? What facilitates enhancing equity in patient experience through better measurement?
Advancing the Science and Implementation of Patient Narratives (October 2021)
In this invitation-only, virtual research meeting, CAHPS researchers, field test partners, and others gathered online to discuss the current and potential uses of patient narratives and the development of open-ended survey items designed to elicit balanced, complete, and actionable narratives in different care settings. This meeting explored the following four questions:
- How can narratives be analyzed, reported and used for maximum impact in quality improvement initiatives?
- What are the challenges and opportunities for using patient narratives in public reports?
- What do narratives reveal about patients’ experiences that complement CAHPS survey results? How can narrative questions be successfully implemented in real-world settings?
- What are the potential benefits and challenges of using Natural Language Processing (NLP) and other machine learning methods for analyzing narratives? What are the advantages of NLP methods over human qualitative coding approaches? How can the two approaches be combined for optimal effect?
Advancing Methods of Implementing and Evaluating Patient Experience Improvement Using CAHPS® Surveys (October 2020)
This invitational research meeting brought together CAHPS research and survey users virtually to explore three major topics:
- What we know from prior research about the organizational factors and environment needed to improve patient experience.
- How organizations in different healthcare settings are using CAHPS survey results, other data, and targeted strategies to improve specific aspects of patients’ experience.
- What evaluations of improvement initiatives using CAHPS data can teach us about what it takes to improve patient experience.
The speakers and participants in this meeting represented a variety of healthcare organizations, including physician groups, hospitals, health plans, dialysis facilities, and hospices.
Advances in Survey Methodology: Maximizing Response Rates and the Representativeness of CAHPS® Survey Data (September 2018)
This research meeting focused on two related topics:
- Improving response rates for CAHPS surveys.
- Ensuring the representativeness of respondents to CAHPS surveys.
The speakers and participants included members of the CAHPS Consortium, other researchers working with CAHPS surveys, experts in survey methodology, representatives of Federal agencies that use CAHPS surveys, experts in patient-centered care, and other stakeholders such as health plans, health systems, and accrediting organizations.
The presentations and discussion focused on three issues that point to priorities for future research:
- The promise and challenges of various survey modes.
- Strategies for encouraging survey responses.
- The potential impact of changes to survey length, design, and format.
To learn more, read a summary of the September 2018 research meeting on survey methodology (PDF, 442 KB).
Advancing the Science and Implementation of Patient Narrative Elicitation and Reporting (September 2016)
The purpose of this research meeting was to identify the key methodological, operational, and policy issues that would need to be addressed to advance the evidence-based use of patient narrative information as a complement to CAHPS survey scores. In additional to CAHPS researchers, participants included representatives of health systems, health plans, patient advocacy groups, regional quality improvement coalitions, research organizations, and foundations.
Following presentations by the CAHPS team about the findings from experimental research and early field tests, the participants discussed a variety of challenges and issues related to:
- Eliciting representative narratives from patients.
- Analyzing the narratives to identify actionable information.
- Reporting the narratives to health care providers and to the public.
- Using narratives to inform quality improvement processes.
Topics identified for future research included the following:
- Developing elicitation protocols for other healthcare settings.
- Testing alternative narrative invitations/framing language.
- Improving the efficiency of data collection modes.
- Strategies for taking analysis of narratives to scale (e.g., natural language processing (NLP).
- Assessing alternative feedback methods for clinicians.
- Exploring regulatory/legal issues related to public reporting of narratives.
To learn more, read a summary of the September 2016 research meeting on patient narratives.