"Just slightly rephrasing the question sounds more inviting," she says. "When we ask 'if' instead of 'what,' most of the time the patients will say they don't have any questions. [But] patients always have questions, and when they don't get to ask them, it only makes them more anxious."
As for how to make the patient experience at academic medical centers and health systems more like that of community hospitals, a positive, patient-centered culture is vital, Setia says. A key factor in patient satisfaction is hospital employee morale.
"Patients often choose a large medical center because of its academic affiliation and large specialty base for assisting with the most complex health concerns or even the most common," she says. "They will expect the environment to feel large and complex but that doesn't mean that there is less emphasis on individual attention. We can still focus on individualized patient care at the bedside."