Pinnacle Study Finds Connection Between Quality Award Achievement and Higher Survey Results

Quality Award; Quality
Data Show AHCA/NCAL Quality Awards Improve Customer Satisfaction, Employee Retention Among Recipient Centers.
A recent study by Pinnacle Quality Insights tells a convincing story regarding the impact of the AHCA/NCAL Quality Award program on recipient centers. The program routinely gathers data from recipient centers to better understand the effects of the Quality Award program on centers who pursue and achieve awards. This study is the first to look specifically at Silver Quality Award recipients and the impact of their achievements on customer satisfaction and employee retention.

Pinnacle's assessment was an outcome of many recent challenges to the industry, including the pressing and ongoing workforce shortage as well as the overall recovery of the sector after the COVID-19 outbreak. These challenges have created an increasingly challenging set of circumstances for long term and post-acute care centers to overcome as they work towards the overarching goal of providing quality care to millions of people across the country. By looking more closely at the correlation of the Quality Award program with customer satisfaction and employee retention, AHCA/NCAL hoped to be able to find additional compelling data to support providers' pursuit of the program as a means of recovery and business excellence in a post-COVID environment.

As noted by Pinnacle in its online release of the study's results, the study compared performance of Silver Quality Award recipient versus centers those that did not win an award from 2018-2022 (with a focus on the year before, the year of, and the year after receiving an award).

Key Results

Result #1: Centers that achieved the Silver Quality Award saw on average a 7.9% higher score in employee satisfaction over non-recipients the year before receiving the award.

As noted in the Pinnacle report, “centers that won silver National Quality Awards for employee satisfaction enjoyed the greatest margin of superiority over non-winners the year prior to receiving the award. Awardees scored higher in each of the three most influential survey categories, with a 7.9% average higher score."

Key Result #2: Customer Satisfaction increases notably over non-recipient organizations in the year the center achieves the award, with a notable spike in Q4 when awards are announced.

Centers that received the Silver Quality Awards had an advantage over non-winners in every survey response category for customer satisfaction in the year prior to receiving an award, but the difference became more pronounced in the year that the center achieved the award. Throughout the year the center received the award, customer satisfaction scores were up across all measures, with a noticeable increase in Q4 when AHCA/NCAL officially celebrates award recipients.

Summary & Takeaways:
Pinnacle reported increases in employee satisfaction and customer satisfaction for Silver Quality Award recipients the year prior, the year of, and the year following the achievement of the award. This leaves the AHCA/NCAL team with a better understanding of the true impact of the process of achieving a Quality Award on a center and its residents, patients and team.

In our daily work, the Quality Awards team routinely talks about the AHCA/NCAL Quality Award Program as a journey, and we do this intentionally. The impact of the award is not limited by or confined to the achievement of the award itself. In fact, the data show that teams come together and feel the strongest in the year prior to achieving the award–giving us clear insights and information about the impact of the pursuit of the award on a team. In fact, it shows us that the pursuit of the award is, in many ways, a more impactful process than achieving the award itself. This understanding is essential in helping to grow the program: it's about the decisions that leadership teams and staff make today that will pay off in the future. Teams and staff members will be committed to the process and the journey an entire year before their customer satisfaction rates will follow suit–but the customer satisfaction rates do increase and will increase over time.

To learn more about Pinnacle Quality Insights, visit their website. To read the study summary, click h​ere. To learn more about the Quality Award program, visit the AHCA/NCAL Quality Award website.