Experience Management

Qualtrics gives thanks to healthcare workers

I have been pondering this post for days. The topic I am here to shine a light on is near and dear to my heart. This week is Patient Experience Week––a globally recognized event to celebrate and honor the people impacting patient experience every day. It is a week to salute the healthcare workers that patients and families rely on in their darkest moments.

Before coming to Qualtrics, I spent nearly 20 years on the frontlines of healthcare. As I have watched this global crisis unfold, my heart aches for my dear friends who are still on the frontline - no one is at the sharp end of this experience more than our healthcare workers who are showing up every day with unbelievable courage and dedication.

As the pandemic swept the world, the healthcare workforce continued to show up to work to do what they are trained to do - risking their lives to care for the sick. They have faced tremendous shortages in critical protective equipment and supplies. They have worked tirelessly around the clock to prepare for the surge and done so with tremendous grace in extremely difficult conditions. In addition, the financial toll on this industry as all elective procedures and visits have been stopped has been staggering, resulting in unprecedented furloughs across the industry.

In light of the heroism we are witnessing globally as we battle this pandemic, I think this is an incredible opportunity to pause and simply say thank you.

When we think of healthcare workers, we immediately think of doctors and nurses. However, the list of people who impact patient experience goes way beyond that. Therapists who help with recovery. Housekeeping, maintenance, kitchen staff who help with patient comfort and well-being. Call center, billing and patient relations staff who resolve patient issues. Administrators, EMTs, admissions staff ... the circle of people who touch patient experience is wide. These are the faces of our healthcare heroes.

And it touches all of us. Several of my colleagues have loved ones in the eye of the storm.

One colleague shared a story with me about her cousin, who is a mom, wife and nurse from Charleston, South Carolina. However, she is not at home with her family. She is currently fulfilling her duty as a Captain in the Navy Reserves, working on a unit to care for the sick at a hospital in NYC.

Another colleague’s mom is a housekeeper at a hospital and she’s right in the thick of things, putting the well-being of patients ahead of her own. Others tell stories of family members who are separated from each other out of fear they could infect one another or border closures that prevent them from going home after their shifts. We hear stories of people coming out of retirement to go back to work or team members being redeployed within their organizations to help where they are needed. And then there is the reality of those being furloughed in the midst of this economic crisis being fueled by the rampant spread of this virus.

For many of us, stories like these hit close to home because we have family and family in healthcare, striving to care for patients even in these most trying times. We are all impacted by this global crisis in one way or another.

As we explored ways to get involved in Patient Experience week, we wondered how connected our team at Qualtrics was with the healthcare workforce. We surveyed our entire company (yes, using the Qualtrics platform!) to get a picture of how many Qualtrics employees have family and close friends in healthcare, and the results were astounding. Over 800 people responded and my heart was bursting as I read about our extended family and where they work. Over 2000 people in our extended Q family work in healthcare.

Wow.

They represent our moms, dads, siblings, children, aunts, uncles, cousins, and dear friends from all over the world.

We stand in awe to celebrate our loved ones in healthcare and healthcare workers around the world this week. We are launching #QthanksU, a campaign designed for our team to give thanks and appreciation to our Q family in healthcare.

I invite you to join us. Think about your family and friends, think about how they have inspired you (as you have hopefully stayed home to do your part in flattening the curve), think about what you can say to honor their bravery and appreciate all they have sacrificed. Let’s tell their stories.

My heart bursts with pride for my colleagues and friends who have given so much. For the teams at Virginia Mason Medical Center and Yale New Haven Health System that I have had the privilege of working beside, thank you for your brilliant and compassionate care. The residents of Washington and Connecticut are lucky you are in their corner. For all of my friends at so many organizations across the world, at the bedside and leading the way, I hold you close and raise you up this week in appreciation and awe. Thank you.

Let’s flood social media with these stories this week to celebrate the people we love. #QThanksU #HealthcareHeroes

From our Qualtrics family to you, thank you.

Susan Haufe // Healthcare Chief Industry Advisor

Susan has over 20 years of experience building customer-centric cultures. Before Qualtrics, she served as the Chief Experience Officer for Yale New Haven Health and the Administrative Director for Patient Relations and Service at Virginia Mason Medical Center. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Social Work from Texas Christian University, Master’s in Health Administration from the University of Washington and serves on The Beryl Institute Solutions Advisory Board.

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