Fam Pract Manag. 1998 Nov-Dec;5(10):8.
To the Editor:
I agree that patient satisfaction surveys tend to produce physician approval ratings that fluctuate within a narrow range (see “Staff surveys tell more than patient surveys,” September 1998, and “Using Qualitative Self-Evaluation in Rating Physician Performance,” May 1998). The validity of patient surveys comes when the responses are reproduced from many different patients over time. I also agree that staff members are in an ideal position to assess a physician's activities, but I have two concerns about this.
Evaluations by only a few staff members may be skewed by lack of objectivity (for example, a staff member holding a grudge against a physician, or a staff member being overly loyal to a particular physician). On the other hand, even a truly objective evaluation has its complications, in that it could be misconstrued by the physician and create difficulties in staff relationships.
Like a good marriage, a good partnership, even a good CQI project, productive performance evaluations cannot happen unless all parties are experienced in the give and take of constructive criticism. Until you know your personnel can handle that, it may be unwise to incorporate staff evaluations of physician performance.
WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU
Send your comments to firstname.lastname@example.org. Submission of a letter will be construed as granting AAFP permission to publish the letter in any of its publications in any form. We cannot respond to all letters we receive. Those chosen for publication will be edited for length and style.
Copyright © 1998 by the American Academy of Family Physicians.
This content is owned by the AAFP. A person viewing it online may make one printout of the material and may use that printout only for his or her personal, non-commercial reference. This material may not otherwise be downloaded, copied, printed, stored, transmitted or reproduced in any medium, whether now known or later invented, except as authorized in writing by the AAFP. Contact email@example.com for copyright questions and/or permission requests.
Want to use this article elsewhere? Get Permissions
More in FPM
Related Topic Searches
MOST RECENT ISSUE
Access the latest issue of Family Practice Management