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At CHA, we are dedicated to serving our neighborhoods and our employees are at the heart of this compassionate, quality care. We are building a skilled, dynamic workforce to meet patient needs.
Job Details

Patient Relations Consultant

Date Posted: 05/25/2022

Requisition Number: 2138

Location: 1035 Cambridge Street

Work Days: 8:30-5

Category: Professional and Management

Department: Quality Management

Job Type: Full time

Work Shift: Day

Hours/Week: 40.00

Union: No

Union Name: Non Union


The Division of Quality is responsible for promoting a culture of safety, patient and staff engagement, and performance excellence aligned with national patient safety goals.

Cambridge Health Alliance (CHA) is a vibrant, innovative health system that serves everyone in need. With over 140,000 patients in Cambridge, Somerville and Boston's metro-north region, CHA is passionately local. It provides high quality, essential services like primary care, specialty care, hospital care, emergency services, maternity care and behavioral health in convenient neighborhood locations. CHA patients have seamless access to advanced care for rare or complex conditions at its clinical partners - Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) and Mass. General Hospital for Children (MGHfC). As a teaching hospital of Harvard Medical School, Harvard School of Public Health, Harvard School of Dental Medicine and Tufts University School of Medicine, CHA is proud to train the health care providers of tomorrow.

The Quality and Safety Department serves as a resource center to the organization to cultivate a culture of safety, eliminate preventable harm for all patients and staff, provide high value, equitable, evidence-based care, create an excellent care experience and to develop institutional capacity in improvement science and promote data-driven decision-making. Join our talented team to contribute towards the mission of our organization.

Serves as a highly visible, energetic champion for identification, management and resolution of patient complaints and grievances. Will oversee all aspects of intake, follow up, resolution and documentation in the RL Solutions Feedback system. Will act as liaison between patients, families and the organization in acknowledging and responding to concerns and requests in a compassionate and supportive manner. Possess strong customer service and interpersonal skills, ability to handle difficult situations constructively and interact with physicians and senior leaders. Excellent written and oral communication skills, knowledge of healthcare environment and regulatory requirements preferred

Key Responsibilities:
Under the supervision of the Patient Relations Manager, conduct timely investigations and response to all patient concerns/complaints/grievances for clinical service areas including interviewing staff and reviewing medical records. Facilitates effective communication between patients, families and providers to enhance patient/family-centered care and ensure common goals. Negotiate and mitigate expectations to promote satisfaction, ensure quality and safety and minimize the risk of adversarial outcomes.
Responds to requests for intervention to assist in managing difficult patient/family situations. Collaborates with clinical service area management and administrative leadership, frontline staff or other hospital services to provide real-time support and/or improvement strategies to reach effective resolution. Accessible by pager during regular hours of operations.
Oversees documentation of information regarding patient and/or staff concerns and requests in the department database and disseminates data to appropriate leadership staff for quality assurance purposes.
Oversees dissemination of specific reports to highlight clinical service areas' opportunities for improvement efforts, including progress, obstacles and trends in compliment/complaint data. Proactively identifies trends in collaboration with clinical and administrative leadership in order to develop strategies to improve quality and satisfaction and reduce risk and liability.
Utilizes data management systems to meet regulatory requirements for CMS, DPH, DMH and TJC for complaint management and resolution processes.
Drafts formal responses on behalf of senior clinical and administrative leadership (including the CEO, COO, CMO and CNO) in writing to patients and families to compassionately relay regret for their perceived poor experience and inform them of how their feedback is being utilized to implement beneficial practice changes. Meet regulatory compliance requirements for CMS 42 CFR 482.13 for investigating and responding to complaints and grievances consistent with CHA policy and applicable regulations.
Conducts rounds with patients/families in assigned clinical areas to obtain preemptive feedback regarding the inpatient hospital experience.
Provides training/education in clinical service areas and throughout the institution on effective tools for establishing interpersonal connections with patients and families. Identifies opportunities for staff education and facilitates competency learning of clinicians, administrative management and staff in customer service improvement. Connects patients and families with appropriate hospital services and resources (i.e. social work, interpreter services, chaplaincy, library services etc.)
Maintains department service standards with particular attention to staff teamwork, communication, cultural respect, and time/priority management.
Categorizing complaints into the Feedback database system and responding to patient complaints received via phone, email, letters, social media and initiate review as directed by Manager of Patient Relations
Work with unit/site managers for any low level complaint, lost items, issues resolved immediately by manager and assist with Service Recovery effort
Conduct immediate/appropriate review and response to any patient complaint under the direction of the Manager of Patient Relations. Support the reporting out of trends, findings, and actions to local and organization-wide leadership

Responsible for rounding on in-patient psychiatry units across the system, to respond to patient complaints.


Other information:
Education/Training: Requires Bachelor's degree or its equivalent, with graduate level experience highly preferred, and with at least 5-7 years of experience acting as consultant with clinical and non-clinical staff conducting training and program implementation. Ability to analyze complaints/grievance trends in RL solutions; prepare and present monthly data reports for senior leaders and department directors.
Certifications: Human Rights Officer Certification Required
Essential Skills:
Requires ability to advocate for patients and families in a complex clinical environment.
Requires excellent interpersonal skills with individuals in crisis, including populations with mental health illness and/or substance use disorder
Requires skills in working with teams to achieve goals.
Requires excellent negotiation skills in a diverse and multicultural environment.
Requires a high level of sensitivity to confidential information.
Requires excellent verbal, written and presentation skills; ability to effectively communicate with all levels of the organization (senior management and physician leadership to front-line staff)
Requires superior organizational skills, with ability to function independently and effectively in a changing environment, develop timelines and meet deadlines, prioritize multiple projects, and manage time effectively.
Requires experience working with data and databases, RL Datix experience preferred.
High energy and organized individual with strong communications, interpersonal and systems thinking skills. Ability to communicate both oral and written with all levels of personnel.
Able to function effectively, independently, and efficiently in a stressful and dynamic work environment.
Requires experience to train managers and leaders across the alliance on service recovery to improve patient experience of care

Responsible for rounding on in-patient psychiatry units across the system, to respond to patient complaints.

In keeping with federal, state and local laws, Cambridge Health Alliance (CHA) policy forbids employees and associates to discriminate against anyone based on race, religion, color, gender, age, marital status, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, veteran status, disability or any other characteristic protected by law. We are committed to establishing and maintaining a workplace free of discrimination. We are fully committed to equal employment opportunity. We will not tolerate unlawful discrimination in the recruitment, hiring, termination, promotion, salary treatment or any other condition of employment or career development. Furthermore, we will not tolerate the use of discriminatory slurs, or other remarks, jokes or conduct, that in the judgment of CHA, encourage or permit an offensive or hostile work environment.

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