In pretty well any service industry you can leave feedback about your experience, even Microsoft will pester you to fill in evaluation forms whenever you attend one of our events. However while the NHS often seems to be awash with scorecards and league tables, feedback from its customers is usually limited to the occasional focus groups.
Then the BBC picked this announcement up from Gordon Brown on 10 March -
“We are ushering in a new world of accountability in which parents, patients and local communities shape the services they receive”
Possibly this was this prompted by the I want Great Care web site setup by Dr Neil Bacon to allow patients to record their feedback on doctors..
The worst that can happen with following feedback advice on Ebay or Trip Advisor is that you stay in a crummy hotel or you didn’t get the bargain you were expecting, but with the I Want Great Care site, peoples’ health and doctors’ careers are at stake so there have to be much tighter controls to ensure the quality of the data and that the reviews are really genuine. Dr Bacon is passionate about good patient feedback so he already has a number of controls to mitigate against this with more on the way.
As you can imagine that this has created a lot of controversy and interest (for the case for and against check the Times OnLine, and yesterday Sunday Telegraph), but it has also attracted interest from a number of charities including Diabetes UK and the Stroke Association who want to see how these illnesses are being treated.
Why am I mentioning this? Because Microsoft helped to make this happen with BizSpark, a complete support service for startups. In the case of I Want Great Care, this was the provision of the back end technology and the hosting of a Proof of Concept on 6th March attended by senior NHS officials; Sir Muir Gray, chief knowledge officer of the NHS, Sir Cyril Chantler, chair of The King's Fund and Sir Donald Irvine, chair of Picker Europe, as well as PCT and acute trust directors.
The site is now out there and even if you don’t use it yourself, it might inspire some thought around customer feedback in your industry, or to think about putting that web 3.0 idea into reality.