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Guide to Patient Satisfaction Surveys and Ratings

Avera Medical Group and North Central Heart Institute value the partnerships we have with our patients and their loved ones. We are committed to providing you the information you need at your fingertips to make informed decisions about your health care, and about the physicians and other providers who walk the care journey with you. As part of that commitment, we post our providers’ patient satisfaction ratings online. 

This guide can help patients and family members understand how we capture and report our patient experience ratings.

About Our Survey

Avera Medical Group and North Central Heart are focused on providing an exceptional experience in every care interaction. All ratings are submitted by actual patients. To ensure we hold ourselves to the highest standards, we partner with an independent patient satisfaction company, National Research Corporation, which provides the technology to display ratings and comments on our provider profile pages. 

Who Receives the Survey?

The survey is made available to Avera Medical Group and North Central Heart patients within a few days following their appointments. Patients are asked to complete the survey and provide comments regarding specific aspects of care. We use this feedback to improve and enhance the care we offer. 

Do You Post All Comments?

Avera Medical Group and North Central Heart are committed to transparency. That means posting all relevant feedback – whether it’s positive or negative. However, we do not post comments that are libelous, profane, or those that risk the privacy of our patients. 

What Questions Do We Ask?

Patients take a survey, and results are used to evaluate patients’ overall perception of care and to identify areas for improvement.

Avera Medical Group Star ratings are based on these questions: 

Provider Communication Questions: 

  • How often did this provider explain things in a way that was easy to understand?
  • How often did this provider listen carefully to you?
  • How often did this provider seem to know the important information about your medical history?
  • How often did this provider show respect for what you had to say?
  • How often did this provider spend enough time with you? 

North Central Heart Star ratings are based on these questions: 

Provider Communication Questions: 

  • Did this provider explain things in a way that was easy to understand?
  • Did this provider listen carefully to you?
  • Did this provider give you easy to understand instructions about taking care of these health problems or concerns?
  • Did this provider seem to know the important information about your medical history?
  • Did this provider show respect for what you had to say?
  • Did this provider spend enough time with you? 

Overall Rating Question

Using any number from 0 to 10, where 0 is the worst provider possible and 10 is the best provider possible, what number would you use to rate this provider?

Why Aren’t There Ratings and Comments for Every Provider?

Industry best practice is clear that more data provides a more accurate picture. For this reason, a provider’s rating will only be posted on the site when he/she has a minimum of 30 completed surveys. Over time, with more surveys received on an ongoing basis, the number of rated providers will increase. Please note that only select providers, depending on their specialty, are participating in survey ratings at this time.

Can Anyone Complete a Survey or Post a Comment about a Provider?

No. Only patients having a clinic visit with an Avera Medical Group provider or an outpatient visit by a North Central Heart physician will receive a survey. The results are based entirely from patients who have actually been treated by the provider. Comments are available to read for one calendar year after submission, and then are removed online to help keep information accurate and current regarding provider performance. 

How is Patient Information Protected?

Patient names are not displayed through the online ratings and commentary reviews. All personally identifiable information is removed prior to display.


This directory contains information about the provider members of Independent Health Care Associates, Avera Health and all Avera entities, members of the Avera Medical Group, and employed select providers with Avera McKennan, Sioux Falls, SD and Avera Marshall, Marshall, MN and physicians with hospital privileges at Avera St. Luke's, Aberdeen, SD; Avera Sacred Heart, Yankton, SD; Avera Queen of Peace, Mitchell, SD; Avera St. Mary's, Pierre, SD.

Non-Avera web sites (e.g., Facebook, Twitter, etc.) linked to from this Web page, including any blogs or other personal, networking or social media Web sites, are not affiliated with, nor endorsed by any Avera facility. Opinions, views, and comments posted on these Web sites are not Avera's.  Avera assumes no legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information, product, or process disclosed on these sites. The opinions of those posting comments, views or opinions on these sites do not necessarily state or reflect those of Avera and shall not be used for advertising or product endorsement purposes.

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Avera is a health ministry rooted in the Gospel. Our mission is to make a positive impact in the lives and health of persons and communities by providing quality services guided by Christian values.

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