The coronavirus pandemic has been pushing the limits of the healthcare systems across the globe. COVID-19 has, without a doubt, begun the process of restructuring and rethinking established healthcare systems worldwide. As we learn to cope with this new reality, hospital systems are utilizing actionable data to make critical patient care decisions. Online discussions and social media data from patients and families have begun to identify ways in which hospitals can drive operational effectiveness, and improve the patient experience.

With the onslaught of data at our fingertips, COVID-19 has created an increased need to understand the perceptions patients have towards treatment. These perceptions include patient’s unmet needs or pain points related to accessing care, changes in their behavior (i.e., not going to the hospital because of COVID-19), and more. What we are seeing is a shift to more real-time data streams that complement traditional Healthcare Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS) scorecards. Several major healthcare providers utilize HCAHPS scorecards to make informed decisions on how to improve the patient experience and have looked to supplement the data with more agile information, which in turn can lead to higher retention rates.

Agile Information for a New Age of Hospital Care

Leveraging global research expertise and advanced analytics to explore key events, topics, or trends impacting patient perceptions and experiences is a critical step for hospital systems to effectively “meet the patient where they are.” Social media and other digital channels represent the patient’s voice and critical response to this crisis. These channels house relevant information related to a hospital’s response to COVID-19 and its effect on the patient community. These channels additionally provide patients with a platform to communicate their thoughts and feelings about how a system is handling the crisis in their local area.

Additionally, social data is being used by providers to assess how other hospital systems are responding to the COVID-19 crisis, including their content and engagement strategies in this critical time.

Though nobody knows the long-term impact of COVID-19 on the healthcare industry, what is true is that in this new value-based care environment we live in, the way that hospitals respond amid a crisis will have lasting implications on brand perception and consumer confidence.

Overhauling Healthcare Technology Ecosystems

More than ever, healthcare professionals see how data can make a difference between life and death. According to Healthcare IT News, Chief Innovation Officers across the globe have been in touch throughout this crisis and have shared valuable information on how to manage this challenging situation best.

Upgrading the digital infrastructure of the healthcare system as a whole is an endeavor that under normal circumstances would have taken months or even years to roll out. However, given the urgency of the pandemic, those in charge of hospital technological decisions have overhauled established systems in a matter of weeks. The level of digitization and the collaborative work between CIOs across many different systems has been vital to adapt to the new situation quickly.

Healthcare Data that Drives Action

Many hospitals have also implemented brand new programs to account for quickly growing patient demand. The necessity of telemedicine is a great example. Additionally, in response to long wait times for hotlines set up for concerned individuals looking for information, some hospitals have turned to artificial intelligence. Many have followed the lead of the Providence St. Joseph Health System in Seattle, WA, which treated some of the US’s first COVID-19 patients in early March. Working with a team at Microsoft, Providence built an online screening tool that could differentiate between those with COVID-19 symptoms and those suffering from less threatening conditions. According to Providence, the tool aided in the diagnostics of over 40,000 patients.

The Pulse of the Provider: Hospital Systems

The fact is, patients have never been more active online than they are right now. With this comes the opportunity to better understand perceptions, experiences, operational effectiveness, and so much more. Using AI-enabled social listening dashboards, users can quickly get the full picture of the public’s view of the hospital, as well as other hospitals in the local market, or peers that fall within the same specialty, ie. Dana Farber and MD Anderson Cancer Center as an example. Additionally, with our team of healthcare research experts, we can provide contextual analysis on shifting patient perceptions, experience and overall satisfaction. This analysis fits both within the current COVID-19 crisis, but more widely as a complement to traditional HCAHPS scorecards. Social data provides a means by which hospital systems can keep a pulse on their local markets and competitors.
Hospital systems looking to find value in social listening can unlock critical insights that bring data to the forefront of decision making:

  • Learn how the voice of patient impacts brand perception
  • Identify and improve access-related issues
  • Guage hospital readiness and response in a rapidly changing ecosystem
  • Assess competitors, especially related to COVID-19 response

Maintaining Healthy Patients and a Healthy Brand


According to Signals, out of the hospital systems we sampled, Mayo Clinic and Cleveland Clinic are driving the most volume of conversation on online channels. Johns Hopkins is the clear stand out in quickly rising velocity of communication.


Using these tools, we are also able to see that the majority of the conversation by the public about hospital systems is occurring on Facebook and Twitter (27 and 24% respectively.) These platforms are followed by general news coverage at 19%. Understanding the channels that people use the most to discuss your brand is critical when creating a content strategy in response to a crisis and knowing where to put out messages.


Additionally, understanding how much of the conversation each hospital controls is a good indication of which healthcare providers are thought-leaders. In this dashboard, we see that Mayo Clinic leads the discussion, followed by Johns Hopkins and Cleveland Clinic. Though healthcare systems are working together much more than competing against one another, it is helpful to look at the strategies of other providers to amplify your voice to the most people possible.

Detailed reporting crawls the internet for relevant and trending content that your brand should pay attention.


This post by an anonymous user on a video posted by Mount Sinai Hospital on Facebook highlights the kind of valuable information that online users can provide for your hospital system. Being able to pull in this real-time social data and incorporate it into your COVID-19 response is crucial and will position your hospital as a leader in the healthcare sphere.

Use Healthcare Data to Your Advantage

Access to the Synthesio dashboard delivers insights in real-time from across the internet in the most actionable way possible. Our interactive platform provides relevant supplemental information to ensure your hospital system stays closely connected to the needs of the community and remains a trusted source of care and information, especially in times of crisis.

Tap into critical, up-to-the-minute intelligence about the conversations surrounding your hospital system with Ipsos SIA’s daily tracking program, powered by leading social listening platform Synthesio.

Click here to view the Ipsos SIA healthcare provider offering

In addition to examining the current COVID-19 issue and its impact on the provider space, Ipsos can also leverage historical mentions of your hospital to assess broader issues. These issues can include patient experience and sentiment, patient satisfaction, hospital readiness, operational effectiveness, billing experience, and much more. As the amount of online data grows, hospitals can complement their traditional HCACHPS scorecards with more real-time monitoring and voice-of-consumer analysis. Additionally, we can integrate non-social datasets like call center data, with social and search data sets for a more holistic picture.

Click here for a full overview of Synthesio and Ipsos’ coverage of the coronavirus pandemic