Patient satisfaction with emergency service hits pre-COVID highs
- Overall patient satisfaction with St John WA reached 98 per cent – exceeding the national average, according to the latest Council of Ambulance Authorities Patient Experience Survey.
- WA outperformed all other jurisdictions for the time taken to be connected to an ambulance service call taker, with patient satisfaction at 71 per cent.
- Despite WA residents having the highest expectations for ambulance response times,WA also exceeded all other jurisdictions for patient satisfaction over ambulance wait times at 69 per cent.
St John WA has outperformed all other jurisdictions for patient satisfaction over time taken to be connected to an ambulance service call taker and ambulance wait times, while exceeding the national average for overall patient satisfaction.
The patient satisfaction key indicators are published in the annual Council of Ambulance Authorities Patient Experience Survey released in October.
Overall satisfaction with St John WA (SJWA) reached 98 per cent – up from its downward trend during COVID-19, with only the Northern Territory exceeding WA by one per cent.
|WA patient satisfaction
Other WA highlights included:
- Highest patient satisfaction for the time taken to be connected to an ambulance service call taker, with 71 per cent – outperforming all other jurisdictions,
- Highest patient satisfaction for wait times in WA, with 69 per cent of respondents reporting they were satisfied with the time taken for an ambulance to arrive – exceeding all other jurisdictions.
SJWA Chief Emergency Officer Brendon Brodie-Hall thanked his frontline team members for continuing to meet the expectations of their community given Western Australian survey respondents had the quickest perceived reasonable wait time of 15 minutes, as compared to the national average of 19 minutes.
“When people in Queensland were asked, ‘if you had an emergency in your home what do you feel would be a reasonable time to wait for an ambulance to arrive?’, they say 23 minutes on average. In South Australia it was 21 minutes and in Victoria it was 20 minutes,” Mr Brodie-Hall said.
“In WA the average expectation is just 15 minutes.
“Given that St John WA has dual challenges of having the largest landmass of any ambulance service in the world and the highest expectations for fast response of any ambulance service in Australia and New Zealand, it is truly a credit to the professionalism of our team members that we surpassed all other jurisdictions for patient satisfaction for ambulance response times.”
He said it was great to see the team’s provision of care was highly rated in the 97th percentile, with trust and confidence returned to previous highs.
“One quote in the survey report from a WA patient really stood out to me, ‘They arrived sooner than expected. The paramedics were so lovely, compassionate and thoughtful. I couldn’t have asked for better service’,” Mr Brodie-Hall said.
“That high level patient satisfaction is what we strive for every day across WA, and this survey demonstrates our continued efforts for the WA community are being recognised.”
SJWA was also a nation leader in assistance provided by call takers, clear explanations provided by attending service personnel and the quality of patients’ ambulance rides.
SJWA Group CEO Kevin Brown said he was grateful for Western Australians’ revived trust in the service.
“We understand there is always learnings in a service this size and we will continue to listen and innovate for the betterment of patient care,” Mr Brown said.
More than 600 Western Australians were included in the survey, which quizzed a total of more than 4000 Australian patients, 1000 New Zealand patients and nearly 600 Papua New Guinea patients, all of whom were mostly aged over 50 with almost half having called an ambulance at least once in the past 12 months.
The survey is conducted as a mailout in Australia to patients who have been transported by ambulance in an emergency or urgent context.