The division of thoracic surgery was recently honored for improving its patient satisfaction scores, and leadership and staff say it’s all thanks to their outstanding teamwork.
Part of the department of surgery, thoracic surgery was the third $10K Press Ganey winner through Baylor’s That’s the Way program. The group showed the most improvement in Press Ganey scores over a six-month period, increasing its ranking in patient satisfaction to the 75th percentile from the 15th percentile.
That’s the Way was started by a donation from a grateful patient who had an exceptional experience with Baylor College of Medicine physicians and staff. The program recognizes two employees per month who go above and beyond to provide exemplary service. In addition, every six months the department with the most improvement in its Press Ganey overall mean score rank wins the $10,000 prize.
Faculty and staff in the division were celebrated at a luncheon held in their honor on Feb. 26. Baylor President, CEO and Executive Dean Dr. Paul Klotman congratulated the group, acknowledging how difficult it is to improve Press Ganey numbers.
“You don’t’ make these changes without every single member of the team contributing,” Klotman said. “I have incredible respect for what you did as a team.”
Dr. James McDeavitt, senior vice president and dean of clinical affairs, said that now thoracic surgery will serve as model to other clinical departments and divisions at Baylor.
Lisa Icard, director of clinical operations for thoracic surgery, and Sunny Chopra, project coordinator in the department of surgery, accepted a check on behalf of the entire division, and Dr. David Sugarbaker, chief of thoracic surgery and director of the Baylor Lung Institute, accepted a commemorative trophy.
The division of thoracic surgery and the Lung Institute are relatively new to Baylor, established in 2014 under the leadership of Sugarbaker. “We have seen tremendous growth over the last 18 months, and it’s taken a fundamental commitment to teamwork to stay ahead of that growth. I have never seen a kinder group of people than all of you, and it’s my privilege to work with you,” he said.
“Nothing is more important than being able to say that we are giving the best possible care,” he added.
The That’s the Way program is coordinated by Karla Heath, executive director of clinical operations. She offered the reminder that no matter what an employees’ clinical position – from front desk representative to medical assistants, nurses and physicians – they have the opportunity to help someone and make an impact on them.