Patient survey of value in relation to radiology: results from a survey of the European Society of Radiology (ESR) value‑based radiology subcommittee
An ESR (European Society of Radiology) survey was carried out among patients in 2019, to better understand how they perceive the value of radiology to improve the concept of Value-Based Radiology (VBR) in Europe, ensure radiology’s value is properly weighted in Value-Based Health Care metrics, and maximise the value of radiological services to patients.
Whilst most expressed general satisfaction with the radiological services they received, certain aspects left room for improvement. The responses from 400 patients based in 22 countries highlight that 80% are unfamiliar with the concepts of VBR and Value-Based healthcare, which seeks to place quality at the centre of the healthcare decision-making to reduce costs and improve health outcomes by providing patient-centred services.
However, radiology is often overlooked and included only as a cost in the healthcare value chain although the ESR strives to show the crucial role of radiology in contributing value to many patients.
The results of the survey showed that the lack of communication was the main cause of dissatisfaction. Indeed, the satisfaction with the information provided pre-procedure and the availability of the radiologist had the lowest average ratings, and half of respondents were unaware of their right to receive information on radiation dose exposure. Also, it underlined that patients considered that the three most important aspects when receiving radiology services were the absence of errors in the diagnosis, the performance of the appropriate procedure and a swift diagnosis.
The outcomes of the survey highlighted that improved communication and changes to direct radiologist-patient communication could boost the perceived value of radiological services, but would require much greater investment in resources.