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We elevate patients’ voices to improve care.

NRI recognizes the importance of integrating consumer’s perceptions of care into standard performance measures. Inpatient care can be patient centered and use the voice of the patient to develop and modify care practices.

NRI developed the Inpatient Consumer Survey (ICS) in 2002 to gather consumers’ evaluation of their inpatient care. The survey is comprised of six measures/domains that provide a summary of consumers’ evaluations on key areas of their experience of care. It is available in both English and Spanish versions. Currently, there are approximately 87 facilities nationwide that participate in the ICS benchmarking service with NRI.

Item and Domain Scoring 

The Inpatient Consumer Survey is a 28-item self-administered survey, presented on two pages with no skip logic. Each item is based on a standard 5-pt scale, from strongly disagree (1) to strongly agree (5), with an option for not applicable. Twenty-one items cluster into six domains/measures and 7 miscellaneous items are kept due to their relevance for consumers. Each domain is scored as the percentage of patients who “respond positively” to the domain (an average value greater than 3.5 for items in the domain).

Measure Description

The ICS measures are represented by six domains containing three or four questions each. Patients' reports of the effectiveness of the organization in enabling respectful, compassionate, inclusive, and supportive encounters among patients and health care professionals are important dimensions of the quality of care of the organization.

  1. Outcomes of Care: The receipt of services should enable patients to effectively deal with their illness and with social situations. It includes items such as “I am better able to deal with crisis.”
  2. Dignity: The provision of services should be in an atmosphere where patients feel respected and treated with dignity. It includes items such as “I was treated with dignity and respect.”
  3. Rights: The provision of services should be in an atmosphere where patients feel they can express disapproval with conditions or treatment and receive an appropriate response from the organization. It includes items such as “I felt free to complain without retaliation.”
  4. Participation in treatment: Patients' involvement in the treatment process and the coordination of discharge planning with their doctors or therapists from the community are enabling activities that strengthen the patients' ability to care for themselves. It includes items such as “I participated in planning my discharge.”
  5. Facility environment: The provision of services should be in an environment conducive to patients feeling safe and enabling patients to focus on recovering from their illness. It includes items such as “The surroundings and atmosphere at the hospital helped me get better.”
  6. Empowerment: The provision of services should be in an atmosphere where patients feel that they, interactively with their doctors and therapists, learn more about their illness and about their treatment options, and are encouraged to determine their best path to recovery. It includes items such as “I had a choice of treatment options.”

Contact us for a Terms of Use Agreement and an Evaluation Copy of the ICS. There is no fee to evaluate the tool.