Parents of Hospitalized Children May Not Feel Equipped to Report Mistakes, According To Latest Leapfrog Group Patient Experience Report

May 26, 2022

The final report in Leapfrog Group series focuses on pediatric patient experience and highlights the need for more data and transparency

WASHINGTON DC, May 26, 2022—The Leapfrog Group, a national watchdog organization of employers and other purchasers focused on health care safety and quality, today released its Pediatric Care report, the final report in a three-part series, Patient Experience During the Pandemic. The report finds that parents or guardians did not feel equipped to report mistakes about their child’s care at a hospital, raising serious patient safety concerns. The report also highlights the critical need for more transparency and public reporting for pediatric patient experiences.

The Leapfrog analysis covers pediatric patient experience in hospitals during both a pre-pandemic (2019 Leapfrog Hospital Survey) and mid-pandemic (2021 Leapfrog Hospital Survey) timeframe. Hospitals collect this data from the patient’s parent or guardian through a questionnaire called the Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems Child Hospital Survey (Child HCAHPS).

Public reporting of Child HCAHPS results is not mandated, and results are only available for those facilities that voluntarily report the results to Leapfrog. The Leapfrog public reporting website is one of the only places where the public can access information about pediatric experiences in hospitals.

Pediatric patient experience remained relatively stable during the pandemic, even suggesting slight improvements. However, there remain serious issues with patient safety. Across the areas examined, key findings include:

  • Parents or caregivers of pediatric patients may not feel equipped to report mistakes about their child’s care. They indicated the least favorable responses about whether hospital staff check the patient’s wristband to confirm their identity and if parents were told how to report mistakes about their child’s care.  
  • Parents or caregivers reported more favorable responses regarding how well doctors communicate with their child, improving by a statistically significant amount during the pandemic.

“Parents or caregivers must feel comfortable raising concerns about mistakes in their children’s care at hospitals or their children are not safe,” said Leah Binder, president and CEO of The Leapfrog Group. “These results raise questions about safety, which every facility that serves children should immediately address.”

The report suggests that despite minimal change during the pandemic, significant room remains for improvement. Research shows that patient experience is a critical indicator of safety in hospitals, and facilities that provide better experiences for patients tend to provide safer, higher quality care.

About Patient Experience During the Pandemic

Patient Experience During the Pandemic is a new three-part series that examines pre-pandemic and mid-pandemic patient experience in three different settings of care: facilities that provide same-day surgeries, adult inpatient hospitals, and hospitals that treat pediatric patients.

Installments of the series include:

About The Leapfrog Group
Founded in 2000 by large employers and other purchasers, The Leapfrog Group is a national nonprofit organization driving a movement for giant leaps forward for patient safety. The flagship Leapfrog Hospital Survey and new Leapfrog Ambulatory Surgery Center (ASC) Survey collect and transparently report hospital and ASC performance, empowering purchasers to find the highest-value care and giving consumers the lifesaving information they need to make informed decisions. The Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade, Leapfrog's other main initiative, assigns letter grades to hospitals based on their record of patient safety, helping consumers protect themselves and their families from errors, injuries, accidents, and infections. For more, follow us on Twitter and Facebook, and sign up for our newsletter.



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