The following is a summary of “Creating an Extraordinary Experience for Women Undergoing Cystoscopy: A Patient-Centered Approach to Process Improvement,” published in the APRIL 2023 issue of Urology by Tam, et al.
For a study, researchers sought to re-examine and improve the cystoscopy process for women based on patient input. Women often perceive cystoscopy as invasive, personal, and fear-inducing, and it is important to address their individual needs and concerns rather than treating them solely as a procedural case.
Women’s perspectives on cystoscopy were collected using experience-based design methodologies. Various data collection methods were employed, including observations and timings of the procedure, emotion word lists, debrief forms, patient surveys, simulation, and interviews—a structured 2-day quality improvement event involved in-person and virtual patient participation in understanding patients’ perspectives better. Ideas for process improvements were generated through brainstorming, creativity exercises, and prioritization. The changes were implemented and refined iteratively based on patient feedback.
The study identified specific areas for improvement based on patient feedback and women’s needs during the cystoscopy process. For example, patients who reported feeling grateful for the positive impact of their care tended to downplay procedure-associated wait times, inconvenience, and discomfort. However, women in the evaluation phase of their treatment and those unhappy with their symptoms tended to magnify the negative emotions associated with the procedure. As a result, actionable changes were implemented, including engaging clinic staff, updating the cystoscopy workflow, and making physical changes to enhance patient privacy.
By identifying and addressing the specific needs of women undergoing cystoscopy, satisfaction can be improved as their emotional, physical, and knowledge-based needs are addressed. Active participation in the healthcare process empowers patients to have a voice in their care, and an exceptional experience with cystoscopy can help alleviate anxiety and give patients a sense of control over the procedure.