Inpatient Experience Survey 2018: technical report

This report provides information on the technical aspects of the 2018 Inpatient Experience Survey, including development, implementation, analysis and reporting.

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6. Data Entry and Fieldwork Quality Control

Data Capture

Once respondents had received the initial survey pack, they could complete the survey using the paper questionnaire provided, online or via the survey helpline.

Paper questionnaires received by Quality Health Ltd were logged and scanned on a daily basis. A verification process was then carried out for each batch scanned and a number of integrity checks were undertaken to ensure that the scanning process had worked correctly and all data had been captured as expected.

Data from online questionnaires was automatically stored alongside the data from the paper questionnaires.

All response information was held separately from the names and addresses of people who were sampled for the survey.

Verification and Upload Process

Once captured, all data are checked in house by Quality Health Ltd according to pre-set verification rules, by staff who have been given training and detailed instructions about the survey. The data entry system ensured that only valid answer codes for each question could be entered and that the correct data appeared in each field. Other checks included ensuring that numeric data was the correct format and that fields were not truncated in error.

Once the survey responses were transferred to ISD and SG statisticians, further validation checks were run on the data to ensure data integrity was maintained.

Secure Disposal

The names and addresses of people who were selected for the survey were stored securely by Quality Health Ltd until the end of the fieldwork period. They were then destroyed.

Once processed, all returned questionnaires were immediately stored by Quality Health Ltd in labelled containers and archived in a secure room on-site until they reached their agreed destruction date. Once destroyed a certificate of destruction was provided.

Free Text Comments

The survey asked respondents three questions where a written comment could be provided:

  • Was there anything particularly good about your hospital stay?
  • Was there anything that could be improved?
  • Do you have any other comments?

Just over 14,500 respondents left at least one comment.

Details that could be used to identify people were suppressed when the comments were entered by staff at Quality Health Ltd. These details included personal names, addresses, medical conditions and dates. Staff names were also suppressed.

Quality checks were undertaken on records to ensure that the instructions for suppressing disclosive details were followed.


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