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A tool developed at Yale New Haven Hospital could improve psychiatric care

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More than 1,600 psychiatric hospitals around the country will soon use a patient survey developed at Yale New Haven Hospital.

The survey was created by a team of researchers led by Dr. David Klemanski, who is the co-director of the Division of Quality and Innovation at Yale New Haven Psychiatric Hospital and an assistant professor at the Yale School of Medicine.

Klemanski said the tool, called the Psychiatric Inpatient Patient Experience Survey, was developed to mitigate the feedback gap between patients and their providers.

“We wanted to develop a measure so that we could essentially really understand what patients are going through,” Klemanski said. “For a long time, psychiatric patients have been excluded from any type of measurement or any type of survey after their experience at the hospital.”

The survey asks patients about their treatment, the team that provided it and the environment they received it in.

It launched at Yale New Haven Hospital in 2022.

“We've given it to around 7,500 patients so far over the last couple of years, and there's many who are saying, 'Hey, we've never had this opportunity to get feedback, we've never had a chance to tell you about our experience,'” Klemanski said.

The survey is optional, but Klemanski said they’ve had good results — 50-60% of patients elect to take the survey before they leave.

The federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid will require all 1,600 of their inpatient psychiatric facilities to use the survey by 2026.

Klemanski said he hopes the survey can help patients heal with dignity, while also improving healthcare.

“Sometimes there are issues with dignity and respect and just feeling included in the process,” Klemanski said. “And we really wanted to give them a greater voice, and hopefully help not only our own workflows at Yale, but also across the country really change the way that they deliver psychiatric care.”

Molly is a reporter covering Connecticut. She also produces Long Story Short, a podcast exploring public policy issues across Connecticut.