Bowel Cancer Australia has launched My Colonoscopy Experience, a nationwide questionnaire inviting Australians to provide feedback about an invasive procedure that comes with risks, including bowel perforation.
The announcement coincides with today’s release of the Colonoscopy Clinical Care Standard by the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care (ACSQHC).
“The Colonoscopy Clinical Care Standard is a welcome first step in outlining the care people who have a colonoscopy should receive, but no specific indicators to measure the patient’s experience are currently included,” said Bowel Cancer Australia CEO Julien Wiggins.
The patient’s experience with the health system is an important and meaningful measure of quality of care that can be used for performance monitoring purposes and to drive quality improvement.
“Bowel Cancer Australia created My Colonoscopy Experience to complement the Standard because patient experience must be the cornerstone of patient-centered colonoscopy care.
“User-friendly and easy to understand, the questionnaire only takes a small amount of time to complete but can have a big impact by ensuring the patient voice is heard so that future colonoscopy care reflects what patients want and need,” Mr Wiggins said.
The anonymous online questionnaire addresses the patient’s experience related to colonoscopy referral, pre-admission, care and treatment, interaction with staff, discharge from care and any post-procedural issues.
Anyone age 18 and over who have had a recent colonoscopy can provide feedback about their care by visiting mycolonoscopyexperience.org.
Developed by Bowel Cancer Australia and powered by healthie™, the anonymous questionnaire will remain open indefinitely.
“Measuring patient colonoscopy experience in Australia is long overdue,” said Mr Wiggins.
England’s NHS Bowel Cancer Screening Program sends a similar experience questionnaire to all patients who undergo colonoscopy following an abnormal test result. Results from the nearly 50,858 respondents have provided valuable information about issues experienced by patients.
In contrast, Australia’s National Bowel Cancer Screening Program (NBCSP) has been in operation since 2006 but has never implemented a patient experience questionnaire.
The number of colonoscopies performed in Australia is projected to reach 1.1 million by 2021 – equivalent to one in every 25 Australians – with the Program to account for around 100,000 (9%).
“Every person’s feedback about their colonoscopy experience is unique and valuable,” Mr Wiggins said.