Patient Care

Setting the tone for every patient visit: The PSR effect

Doris Day, patient service representative at the Center for Advanced Medicine show the smiles that greet every patient.

The first face every patient sees, and sometimes the first voice they hear, is the one that sets the tone for every visit. Setting a tone that can lead to optimal quality patient care is the job of the PSR or Patient Services Representative.

There are 20 PSRs at work in our department, located in seven different locations, on the School of Medicine campus and beyond. They answer patient calls and greet patients when they arrive for an appointment. They work on the assumption that seeing a doctor can be a stressful event. They help relieve that stress by:

    • Angie Moeller, PSR for adult audiology at Central Institute for the Deaf.

      Greeting every patient with a generous smile and welcome

    • Scheduling appointments and procedures
    • Answering questions about insurance
    • Explaining test procedures
    • Ensuring accuracy, completion and privacy of medical records
    • Demonstrating compassion and patience for all patient concerns
    • Ensuring every patient leaves the clinic informed and comforted

Amanda Walter has served as a PSR for only a year, but she understands that taking that couple of extra minutes to explain procedures to a patient can make all the difference.

“An important part of my job is giving the patient the opportunity to have all their questions answered and to make them comfortable,” she says. “A little effort can go a long way.”

PSR LaTasha Johnson helps patients over the phone in McMillan Hospital.

Tom Clement, on the other hand, has been with the department for 20 years. But, that hasn’t changed his perspective of his role in patient care. Like the novice PSRs, he views his primary goal as making sure each patient visit is as pleasant as possible. He understands that, “the first person a patient interacts with when being seen at any medical facility can make the whole difference in how that facility is viewed by the patient.”

Director of Adult Audiology Michael Valente, PhD, supervises PSRs at three different clinics and agrees they all share a common goal.

“The very first impression of the quality of care provided by our physicians is the interaction with our PSRs,” he explained. “They are the first key to our success in providing optimal patient care.”