In recognition of the Beryl Institute’s Patient Experience Week (April 26 – 30, 2021) Dr. Karla Miller, HCA Healthcare’s chief patient safety officer and leader of the organization’s patient experience work, celebrates our commitment to patient-centered care. Plus, learn about 41 performance achievement awards given this past September by the Press Ganey organization to HCA Healthcare affiliate hospitals and facilities for our commitment to improve care delivery. 

Patient Experience Moment: During the pandemic, HCA Healthcare nurses at Trident Medical Center in Charleston, S.C. are working to make sure patients are not only getting healthy, but staying happy. When HCA Healthcare patient Wanda Cleveland, a grandmother of six, was unable to attend a birthday party for one of her grandchildren while hospitalized – her nurse, Allie Fant, ensured that she did not miss out on the occasion. She helped connect Wanda to the birthday party via a video conference call. During the virtual encounter, Wanda was able to sing “Happy Birthday” to her 16-year-old granddaughter.

From day one of our more than fifty-year history and continuing today, our colleagues are dedicated to giving people healthier tomorrows. Our colleagues prioritize patient wellbeing all through the year, but this dedication especially rings true during Patient Experience Week.

In the Care Experience work that we do across HCA Healthcare’s 186 hospitals and approximately 2,000 sites of care, I am often reminded of the words of our co-founder, Dr. Frist, Sr.:

“The great hospitals will always put the patient and the patient’s family first, and the really great institutions will provide care with warmth, compassion and dignity for the individual.” –  Dr. Thomas Frist, Sr., HCA Healthcare Co-Founder

Today, and every day, we are committed to compassionate, connected care for each patient, at every stage of the patient journey, including pre-care, care and post-care.

Appropriately, Patient Experience Week precedes National Nurses Week and Hospital Week. I know we are all looking forward to celebrating our incredible healthcare heroes in May, and I invite you to join us in recognizing their dedication to excellence in patient experience this April.

Patient and Care Experience teams across HCA Healthcare review feedback, through the Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems Survey (CAHPS), focus groups, anecdotal feedback and other qualitative measures to determine how we can better carry out our mission and be there for patients at their most vulnerable moments.

We know that confidence in safety and security drives patient loyalty; our caregivers and providers also echo the need for safety to feel connected to care. Our swift action to protect patients and caregivers with distancing, universal masking, patient flow and access, provided an opportunity to empower all colleagues to do their best work for care delivery.

HCA Healthcare Press Ganey recognitions

As part of this special week, we would like to recognize the 41 performance achievement awards given to HCA Healthcare affiliate hospitals and facilities by the Press Ganey organization at its annual performance achievement awards this past September.

These annual awards honor a “commitment to delivering reliably safe, compassionate, high-quality care and creating a culture of excellence to engage and support caregivers has measurably advanced health care.” Superior patient care remains at the forefront of everything we do as a healthcare organization, and I’m so proud of our colleagues for the recognition they received for their commitment to these guiding principles.

The Pinnacle of Excellence Award recognizes Press Ganey clients who have maintained consistently high levels of performance for three years, with the highest performing organizations winning in each category. This year, six HCA Healthcare facilities were named Pinnacle of Excellence Award recipients:

Given annually, the Guardian of Excellence Award recognizes top-performing healthcare organizations in the U.S. that have achieved the 95th percentile or above for performance in patient experience, employee engagement, physician engagement or clinical quality. This year, the 35 HCA Healthcare facilities were recognized with Guardian of Excellence Awards – the most earned in a single year in our organization’s history:

* HCAHPS refers to the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems

For more information about Press Ganey’s annual performance achievement awards, click here.

Patient experience stories


Patient Experience Moment (Plantation, Florida) 

Bibi Ali, a HCA Healthcare environmental services (EVS) associate, plays a critical role in keeping patients and colleagues safe at Westside Regional Medical Center in Plantation, Florida. In June 2020, she provided encouragement and offered an attentive ear to our patient, Shane Brown.

After seeing a sign on Shane’s hospital room door that requested it not be cleaned, she inquired to see how she could help. She learned that Shane has Mast Cell Activation Syndrome, a condition which causes his lungs to swell shut and experience severe allergic reactions when exposed to strong smells, such as cleaning supplies and perfume. After talking to Shane and his care team about his condition, she went out of her way to clean his entire room with safe, odorless supplies.

“My room looked great. I asked her why she did it and she said she wanted to make sure I had a clean environment,” said Shane. “It was the sweetest thing and something I will never forget. It meant a lot to me. Customer service in a hospital is just as important as how good the surgeon performing my surgery is and I don’t take things like that for granted.”

Patient Experience Moment (San Antonio, Texas)

HCA Healthcare caregivers went above and beyond to ensure that their patient was able to participate in a career milestone for his son. After Luis Etienne suffered heart failure, he was put on the organ donor list in April 2020 in hopes of finding a perfect match.

His son, U.S. Army Major Luis Etienne Jr., did everything he could to come home to Texas to see his father at affiliate Methodist Hospital in Texas. Once he was granted emergency leave, Luis Jr. arrived in Texas. That same day, his father was matched for a heart transplant. While he was visiting, Major Etienne requested his father pin him as he was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel.

Caregivers helped put together a special ceremony for the family as Luis formally pinned his son into his new rank.

Patient Experience Moment (Myrtle Beach, South Carolina) 

When a group of HCA Healthcare medical intensive care unit nurses at Grand Strand Medical Center in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina learned that their patient’s daughter was set to be married – and that her wish was for her dad to be a part of her wedding – they quickly sprang into action to bring the ceremony to his hospital room.

In just a few short hours, the nurses teamed up with hospital nutrition services, physicians and administration to create a beautiful, intimate ceremony. With family joining through the window, Samantha exchanged “I do’s” with her fiancé, Justin, while holding her father’s hand.

Founded in 1968, Nashville-based HCA Healthcare is one of the nation’s leading providers of healthcare services with 186 hospitals and approximately 2,000 ambulatory sites of care, including surgery centers, freestanding ERs, urgent care centers and physician clinics, in 20 states and the United Kingdom.