Natasha (Epissina) Stern

2006 Public Policy Summer Fellow

May 1, 2006
Natasha Epissina Graduate Degree: Harvard Kennedy School
Undergraduate Degree: Cambridge University, UK
Area of interest: Health care, particularly health care disparities
Placement: Boston Public Health Commission
Supervisors: Kristen Golden, Director of Policy and Planning, Boston Public Health Commission and Elaine Ullian, President of Boston Medical Center
Project Description: Natasha worked for Kristen Golden, Director of Policy and Planning at Boston Public Health Commission and Elaine Ullian, BPHC member, and President of Boston Medical Center. Natasha looked at what factors determine patients’ satisfaction with their in-patient hospital care, using Boston Medical Center as a case study. She also studied how patient’s socio-economic and ethnic backgrounds affect their satisfaction with the care received. Based on Boston Medical Center data, interviews with staff and patients and best practice information available from other medical facilities across the US, Natasha presented recommendations on how patient satisfaction can be improved for all patients. Her key conclusion was that a critical determinant of satisfaction is the quality of the personal interaction between the patient and the hospital staff that come into contact with patients. Patients expect to be cared for, but they rate hospital care especially highly when they feel cared about.