Patient satisfaction is an important outcome measurement in the emergency department (ED). When unavoidable, the negative effect of patient wait time may be lessened by communicating expected wait time, affective support, health information, decisional control, and competent providers.
This controlled quasi-experimental design used a convenience sample. The patient questionnaire included demographics, expected and perceived wait time, receiving of comfort items, information and engaging activities and their perceived helpfulness for coping with waiting, and the Consumer Emergency Care Satisfaction Scale measure of patient satisfaction with nursing. Systematic offering of comfort items, clinical information, and engaging activities were statistically analyzed for impact on perceived wait times, helpfulness in waiting, and satisfaction with nursing care.
Interventions were supported by the data as helpful for coping with waiting and were significantly related to nursing care satisfaction. Interventions were less helpful for suburban patients who were also less satisfied.
Nurses can influence patient satisfaction in the ED through communication and caring behaviors.
Author Affiliations: ICU/PCU Clinical Nurse Specialist and Educator (Mr Wright) and Accreditation Coordinator (Ms Causey), Carolinas Medical Center University, Charlotte, North Carolina; Professor Emeritus and Nursing Research/EBP Consultant (Dr Dienemann), University of North Carolina, Charlotte; Director of Emergency Nursing Operations & Emergency Services (Ms Guiton), ER Staff/Charge Nurse (Ms Coleman), Lake Norman Regional Medical Center, Mooresville, North Carolina; Director of Analytic Services (Ms Nussbaum) Dickson Advanced Analytics Group, Charlotte, North Carolina.
This study had no financial support or grant funding. In-kind support from Nursing Administration, Rose Brandau, MSN, at CMC University and Rebecca Dunlap, MHA, RN, at Lake Norman Regional Medical Center; also RN Team Members including Megan Anderson, Julie Archer, Jule Bodder, Amanda Coble, Bunny Eubanks, Alaina Gurdo, and Emily Nutter
The authors declare no conflicts of interest.
Correspondence: Mr Wright, 7220 Riding Trail Rd, Charlotte, NC 28212 (firstname.lastname@example.org).