Our 12 Months to Christmas

This holiday season, we have been looking back at how the years’ events have shaped Energesse and how we help our clients. There’s gratitude in everything we do, and we would like to recap our 12 months to Christmas!

January: We presented our inaugural Energesse Patient Experience (PX) Awards to two well-deserving clients – Western Sydney LHD (WSLHD) in Australia and Bagan Specialist Centre in Malaysia. They achieved significant wins in progressing their organisation’s measurement and improvement capabilities, see here.

February: We helped deploy the MES real-time patient feedback and survey platform at South Western Sydney LHD (SWSLHD) who gained strong traction across their hospitals including Liverpool, Bankstown Lidcombe, Bowral & District, Camden, Campbelltown, and the Oral Health Clinic. Find out more about their story here.

March: We celebrated when the Energesse-WSLHD partnership was as a Finalist for the Best Digital Transformation Project Award at the 2018 Australian Healthcare Week Excellence Awards! We continue to work with WSLHD in their patient experience efforts. We also helped Eastern Melbourne PHN (EMPHN), via their CEO Robin Whyte, her Board and executive with the further development of their Strategy and Performance framework. Our process to do this has now gained interest from other PHNs. 

April: I was honoured to be invited to be the Keynote Speaker at the Australian Telehealth Conference organised by the Health Informatics Society of Australia (HISA) – the recording of the keynote can be viewed here. I also delivered a patient experience workshop at the PXSymposia organised by NSW Health.

May: I had the opportunity to speak about how the research sector could improve Consumer Engagement at the Research Australia Speaker Series. It was great to be part of the panel with Jean-Frederic Levesque from the Agency of Clinical Innovation. Attendees came from across the Australian research landscape and were supported by the Garvan Institute and Vodafone Foundation. Great job to CEO Nadia Levin and her team for organising it.  Click here for more info.

June: I had the pleasure of interviewing Martin Bowles, CEO of Calvary Health as part of the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) Health Leaders Roundtable podcast. A few weeks later I was invited to deliver the education keynote on Strategy and Performance Optimisation to health financial leaders i.e. CFO’s and financial managers, to help them play a bigger role in strategic decisions.

We also completed the process of becoming a member of the Apple Consultant Network (ACN). We are looking forward to evolving the relationship with Apple Health and helping use Apple products to improve experiences in hospitals and other healthcare organisations in 2019.

July: We held our inaugural Patient Experience Roundtable in partnership with The Beryl Institute and WSLHD. The Roundtable helped leaders and patient experience champions understand how to make a greater impact in the patient experience movement, share learnings and network. It was great to have the President of the Beryl Institute, Jason Wolf as speaker – this was the first PX Roundtable outside of Australia! CEO of WSLHD, Danny O’Connor also delivered the opening speech on how to engage leaders in patient-centered care. Find out more here. 

We love teaching and education, so July marked the start of our hugely popular free online Energesse Master class series. We covered a range of topics on patient-centered care to help managers and clinicians on patient experience improvement and culture change and increase skills and capability.

August: We were very excited to share our Energesse Patient Experience Maturity Model – a solution aimed at identifying the patient experience maturity level of a healthcare organisation. The solution conducts a gap analysis and capability assessment on person-centered care and identifies ‘what-to-do’ to improve patient experience and progress on the maturity spectrum. It also has matrices for ‘how to do it’ i.e. actions, solutions to improve PX-centered capabilities. We are thrilled about our first use-case to a major hospital in Victoria. If you feel the PX Mate might speak directly to your pain points, just call or email us to find out more.

September: I was grateful for the opportunity to help patients with hearing difficulties as we ran an online training event on ‘Client-Centered Care’ with Australian Hearing. It was a great opportunity to share our learnings with a new segment of health professionals, clinicians and managers. 

October: We continued to expand our presence in championing patient experience movement through partnerships in IHF Brisbane and the IHI-BMJ Conference in Melbourne. We are proud to continue supporting these leading events.

November: We were at the Healthshare Expo. We also collaborated with Avent Edge for the PX Summit in Melbourne. It was also the month we delivered patient experience training to some of the top cardiologists in Malaysia, at the National Heart Institute (IJN) in Malaysia. IJN is the hospital that saved my father’s life when he went through a quadruple bypass and I count this opportunity as one of my top 5 career highlights of all time, as the cardiologist that treated my dad was actually in the training session I delivered there!

December: We were very thankful to have Nick Ryan, CEO of the Australian Aged Care Quality Agency work with us, to share learnings with the aged care sector, as we have been asked to support consumer engagement and experience improvement for aged care organisations in 2019.

Against the backdrop of these highlights, we welcomed more partridges in our pear tree! Two new employees joined us with great impact, Sharon Dayus (former ICU Nurse and eMR implementation analyst from Cambridge Hospitals Trust UK) as our Patient Experience Specialist and Charles Janoras, (Data Science from Phillipines) in our Operations team.

Energesse has had an amazing year -and it is mostly thanks to you, who are out there putting in the hard work to improve the health and wellbeing of peoples’ lives. My team and I are very grateful for your continued effort and support, and we hope for an even greater 2019, making more waves in evolving the patient experience movement!

Real-time patient feedback program at Western Sydney LHD nominated for Best Digital Transformation project

The successful implementation of Energesse’s ‘MES Experience’ real-time patient feedback platform at Western Sydney Local Health District earned a nomination as an Award Finalist for Best Digital Transformation project at Australian Healthcare Week.

This achievement comes after the patient survey program at Western Sydney Local Health District known as ‘My Experience Matters’ also won the Chairman’s Award and the Bob Leece Award at the Western Sydney District Quality Awards in 2017. Energesse is now implementing a second district-wide implementation at South Western Sydney Local Health District.

At Western Sydney LHD, the platform has now been rolled out across all major hospitals in the health district including Westmead, Blacktown, Mount Druitt and Auburn Hospitals. Key outcomes have included improved scores in the Friends and Family Test (now at 87%) and The Patient Experience District Wide Score which rose to 86% from 72%. Impactful and visible strategies have also been implemented using more detailed data on the patient experience. For example, an internal ward competition (the Ssshh! Challenge) aimed at reducing night-time noise helped staff improve this score by up to 19%.

The Energesse program has also seen similar accomplishments in the private sector. Genea, the 3rd largest chain of IVF clinics in Australia has seen a 15% improvement in their Net Promoter Score in their first year of implementation across their nationwide chain. The platform provided more granular depth in reporting on patient experience, which empowered front-line staff to make meaningful changes in their own units. The improvements to phone communication and targeted nurse training helped increased satisfaction in a sector with higher consumer expectations.

One of the key success factors for Energesse’ programs is the integrated delivery of a customisable IT platform with expert advisory and training capabilities. Dr Ratnanesan, CEO of Energesse stated “one the major reasons why Energesse has been successful with its IT implementations is its specialist consulting methodology to helps clients achieve outcomes and to continuously innovate on the solution’s user experience. This proprietary formula has helped our clients succeed in a challenging yet important priority in healthcare”.

The MES Experience solution provides real-time data to managers and front-line staff through patient surveys. In addition to quantitative data on patient experience, the platform also comes with a sophisticated PanSensic natural language processing algorithm. This AI tool analyses and translate free text into human emotions and automatically theme patient issues and concerns.  Highly useful data analytics on actionable root causes prove to be valuable in informing quality improvement initiatives for the front-line staff and managers. The tool received a High Commendation last week at the prestigious Health Service Journal Partnership Awards in the UK. In the future, the MES Experience platform is offering real-time staff surveys, providing significant synergies and cost savings to hospitals.


Jessica Evans, Project Officer in the Patient and Carer Experience Team at Western Sydney LHD will be delivering a presentation on the Western Sydney LHD implementation on 22nd March 4pm at the Australian Healthcare Week conference.

What to do about ‘Internet’ Health? – A Tip on Execution

Just yesterday, I delivered a 6E Patient Experience Training Workshop at Sydney Children’s Hospital Network (SCHN). We had fantastic engagement with each of the 6Es – Experience, Emotions, Engagement, Execution, Excellence and Evolution. This step-by-step guide to implementing patient experience improvements and the 4th E, gave the clinicians very practical tips on how to execute. Here’s one.

Patients can ask clinicians a myriad of questions and can present a range of behaviours, based on their background, circumstances and their interaction with health information. With the latter, Dr Google is often their personal, trusted friend. So how do we manage ‘Internet Health’?

I interviewed e-patient Dave at a Health Informatics Society of Australia (HISA) talk a few months ago, who had an interesting opinion about prescribing the internet. His key message was that while using the internet for information was perfectly fine, it was important that patients validate the information by talking to their doctors and other patients. Urging patients to talk about what they have found online will encourage ongoing validation, honest discussions and confident involvement in health decisions and treatment. Ultimately, a better patient experience is delivered.

Watch my interview below for Dave’s perspective…

If you are interested in 6E training or further tips for your clinicians in executing patient experience, don’t hesitate to give us a call.


A Patient Story to Inspire You Today…

Happy New Year everyone! Hope you’ve come back refreshed from the holidays and ready to start the year off with a bang! Here’s an inspirational story to help you – with your New Year resolutions, your own personal health or your understanding of the patients and consumers you encounter everyday.

I met Alana Henderson, a patient advocate, at a HISA talk late last year. A woman who had a stroke at the age of 59 (not to mention diabetes and cancer) who changed her life by project managing her health like an engineer. Find out more about how she transitioned out of her dire health circumstances (for less than AUD$300!) through her book ‘Out of the Fog’ (available on Amazon) OR watch the interview below now…

Alana’s key message to practitioners and providers is to ‘not be afraid of what patients do for themselves’. Support the involvement they have in their own care and you can be assured of delivering a meaningful patient experience.

Talk to us now if you are thinking of spearheading initiatives this year around just that! We’ve all the advice, support, training or technology you might need.


5 Tips to Up the Patient Experience When You’re Down on Staff

Christmas is upon us! If you’re like us, you’re probably thinking ‘Where did the year go?’ and if you’re in a high-pressured health environment, your second most immediate thought is ‘How are we going to cope with skeleton staff this season?!’

    1. Here are some ideas on how to maintain patient experience during the silly (and scary) season:Ensuring clear communication with patients. If waiting times are going to be longer, ensure the patient is informed of this, and is updated on the wait time frequently. The ‘why’ is important – perhaps the doctor had to deliver some bad news to a family or staff are away. Be specific if the patient won’t be called in before a certain time.
    2. Make wait areas comfortable. Stock up on the magazines, provide complimentary coffee and tea, make sure the wifi is working or provide TV entertainment. This can go a long way in optimizing patient satisfaction even when the wait time is not ideal.1
    3. Ensure busy staff are not giving off ‘cues of indifference’. Here are some examples:
      • Healthcare professionals avoiding eye contact with “civilians.” Med students hurrying self-importantly down the halls, nearly running down the slow-moving patients who won’t get with the program. Patients ignored by nurses who haven’t yet clocked in and therefore don’t realize they are already (poorly) representing their institution. Doctors in the hallway loudly carrying on about the relative benefits of different vacations they’ve taken. Two radios playing at once from two administrative areas (with the waiting area for patients and their families located equidistant to both). Vending machines that are left out of service indefinitely. Vending machines that require exact change, but there’s no change machine.
    4. Empathy and communication in busy wards. Continue to bring up patient experience survey outcomes at morning staff huddles, motivate staff with small rewards and comments of appreciation to ensure they are still focused on communicating and caring for patients with empathy, even during periods when the ward is short-staffed.Get help! If patient experience measurement is just adding to ward workloads – consider using volunteers to survey patients or automate your patient experience measurement.

We’ve first hand experience with helping health settings do this so just ask us!



1.      http://blog.evisit.com/reduce- patient-wait-times

2.      https://www.forbes.com/sites/m icahsolomon/2015/01/11/8-ways- to-improve-patient-satisfactio n-and-patient-experience-and- by-the-way-improve-hcahps- scores/#6452bf4d5191


Do You Know How Staff Engagement Impacts the Patient Experience?

I delivered a Consumer Engagement Training Workshop in Perth in collaboration with the Health Consumer Council (HCC) just a few days ago. Over 40 staff representing the Ministry of Health, hospitals, healthcare providers, managers, clinicians, and consumers attended the workshop. Taking them through the 6 E framework, I showed them how they could make an impact on health services in their roles as “champions”.

What was most interesting was the number of questions about staff engagement and staff satisfaction surveys. The most important point to emphasise here is that staff engagement and patient experience are not two separate elements. One directly impacts the other and therein lies Bodenheimer’s justification for the Quadruple Aims (not Triple Aims).

Estimates for the prevalence of burnout range from 10%–70% among nurses and 30%–50% among physicians, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants…burnout is viewed as a threat to patient safety because depersonalization is presumed to result in poorer interactions with patients. 1

I reflected on this at a recent break in Byron Bay – watch this video for further clarity around staff engagement…

In mentoring staff who are performing well, it is important to identify when they need a break. Getting a better understanding of what drives each individual team member allows you, as a leader or manager, to identify when they might burn-out.

An ANNUAL staff survey may not be sufficiently sensitive to get to the bottom of key staff issues. Organizations are starting to think about how they can move to a more real-time approach in order to respond to staff concerns more promptly.

The free text comments also help you pinpoint the root cause of staff issues. Illustrative examples:

“My manager has been very supportive but lately she has been overworked and unable to give me the time and advice I need – I wish there was someone else to speak to”

“I noticed that the communication on this ward is very poor compared to my previous one which was very friendly. The two managers would benefit from some sharing”

As a leader, it is equally important to be accountable for your own health and mental health. You might feel that you are performing well, but a quick survey of feedback from staff around you might prove otherwise.

Join other leaders who are innovating on their patient experience and are learning how to survey and impact staff engagement through the MES Platform.

Feel free to call me on 02 8091 0918 if you want to find out more about the MES staff satisfaction survey capability.



1 https://psnet.ahrq.gov/perspectives/perspective/190/burnout-among-health-professionals-and-its-effect-on-patient-safety

4 Learnings from the IHI On Culture Change

I had the pleasure of attending the Institute of Healthcare Improvement (IHI) and BMJ International’s Forum on Quality and Safety in Kuala Lumpur recently. It was a FANTASTIC two days and I learnt a great deal about the integration of patient experience and quality and safety. There was a sterling line up of speakers including Don Berwick, Helen Beavan and industry CEOs who are known change-makers in the industry.

Changing organisational culture is CORE to quality, safety and patient experience initiatives. The IHI Forum certainly drove this home – watch this video to find out more…

Learning 1: Culture change is not just about getting great data but changing the mindsets, leadership, and capturing the hearts and minds of staff and CEOs.

Learning 2: Find out about your patients and communities by listening to 7 stories that they tell. Analyzing these 7 stories can tell you a lot about the major issues in your organization.

Here’s more about the #7stories – IHI CEO, Derek Fealy

Learning 3: When it comes to the patient experience, the technical delivery of medical expertise, health analytics and medications are secondary to staff communication and their teamwork in relation to the patient’s care. Patients and their caregivers are privy to and highly value their overall interactions and care from staff.

Learning 4: Enable social action. Enable and empower staff to create communities of champions within themselves. These communities could be formal or informal and will start to create and drive change in the organisation, similar to a micro-movement.

Do use some of these ideas and let me know how you go with motivating and inspiring staff in your journey toward improved patient experience and culture change. If you have been experiencing specific challenges in engaging staff, call me for a chat on +61 2 8091 0918 or via email.

Reward and Recognise Patient Experience Champions

Western Sydney’s win of the Bob Leece Award at the recent Quality Awards, is a great way to recognise those involved in transforming the patient experience in Australia. Watch this video below about the My Experience Matters Survey and the Patient and Carer Experience Team that led the way…

These awards inspire and motivate staff to continue on in their journey of experience improvement but it is not the only way of recognising staff who are making a change in an organisation. Here are 5 simple ways to celebrate staff:

  1. Recognise them at team meetings – put their names on the agenda as a key item and hand out a simple reward. The Trinity Health System in the US managed to pin-point ‘simple’ rewards by asking staff what their favourite candy bars were in a motivational assessment survey. 1
  2. Match the reward to the achievement. For a smaller achievement, managers or the executive could send a thank-you note. For a high-performing staff, link these notes of appreciation to their annual performance appraisal, as was part of a Reward and Recognition program in the US.1
  3. Involve patients in celebrating a staff member or awarding a patient experience ‘badge’. The Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Trust UK launched a reward scheme last year that saw patients themselves award badges to staff for standout examples of quality care.3
  4. Getting colleagues to recognise each other’s efforts. A hospital in Pennsylvania mounted a ‘Caught You Caring’ initiative to reinforce extraordinary customer service behaviours through peer recognition. They found that asking employees to recognize and document acts of extraordinary customer service had a twofold effect: increased attention to the contributions of co-workers, along with enhanced collaboration and teamwork.2
  5. An ‘I appreciate what you’re doing’ conversation as you pass a staff member in the corridor does wonder for staff esteem. 🙂





Recognising staff is very much a part of the third E (ENGAGEMENT) in our 6E framework – a holistic guide to improving patient experience in a health setting. If you want to find out more about how the 6Es can help you transform staff culture and patient experience, just call or email us.

Western Sydney Patient Experience Program wins 2 Awards!

Every year, Western Sydney LHD hosts the Quality Awards to recognise people and projects within their hospitals, wards, and units that make a difference to patient care and health outcomes. There were 79 submissions this year and ‘Patient Feedback – online, real-time, anytime’ were winners twice over at this prestigious event!

WSLHD’s My Experience Matters won their category – the Bob Leece Award and then went on to scoop one of the top awards of the night – the Chair of the Board’s Award! We are thrilled and commend their strong and determined efforts in improving patient experience LHD-wide.

Here’s how they got there:

  1.    An LHD that that identified gaps in their patient experience measurement and a solution to address it
  2.    Implemented an Australian-first real-time survey at Westmead and Auburn hospitals
  3.    Achieved more than 1300 surveys responses (from 100) and is transparent about how patients rate them!
  4.   Engaged staff from the frontline to executive through discussions and then celebrations!
  5.   Transforming patient experience daily – one banging door, one engaged team, one ward, one hospital at a time…

Some of the winning projects on the night are now being submitted to the NSW Health Innovation Awards and the NSW Premier’s Awards. Watch this space!

Congratulations to the team!

P/S: We’d also like to do a special shout-out to the maternity ward of Auburn Hospital AND the surgical high-dependency ward in Westmead who won the ‘Noise at Night’ challenge recently. Read more here

Want to improve just one aspect of your patient experience measurement or make a series of incremental improvements? Give us a call…

The 6 Types of Patients You Will Encounter (& How to Activate Them)


Clinicians are often challenged with ensuring patients adhere to health advice around their treatment, medication, nutrition, exercise, and other activities. Adherence to long-term therapies by patients with chronic illness averages at 50%1. Adherence to advice on lifestyle changes can be even lower at 20-30%2. Verbal or written instructions and follow-ups are not achieving sufficient health outcomes. Communication strategies that allow a clinician to truly engage with the patient can trigger the patient into ‘activation’ i.e. self-motivated adherence, and greater involvement in their care.

I recently attended a riveting talk, by my friend and global personalised medicine expert,
Matt Riemann, on personalised communication and patient activation. In a roomful of doctors at the University of New South Wales, Matt relayed a clear message about how the language we use to communicate with our patients resonates with them in different ways, based on who they are.

Find out more about how you can encourage better patient adherence among Sensors, Crusaders, Activators, Connectors, Guardians and Diplomats by simply TAILORING the way you engage with them. Watch this video of my interview with Matt Riemann, Personal Health Pioneer & Futurist and Founder of ph360.

We’re brimming with ideas to help you improve the patient experience through Engagement and Activation. Email us with your questions or call us at 02 8091 0918 to find out more…

1.  Adherence to long-term therapies: Evidence for Action, World Health Organisation (WHO)2013, http://www.who.int/chp/knowledge/publications/adherence_Section1.pdf
2.  Factors affecting therapeutic compliance: A review from the patient’s perspective, Jing Jin, Grant Edward Sklar, Vernon Min Sen Oh, Shu Chuen Li, Ther Clin Risk Manag. 2008 Feb; 4(1): 269–286. Published online 2008 Feb. PMCID: PMC2503662