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Patient reported measures

Patient reported measures help people give direct and timely feedback to healthcare providers about what matters to them.

Traditional measures of care may not let you know how a person is actually feeling. Patient reported measures are structured surveys that help you understanding the consumer’s health outcomes and experiences from their perspective.

They help people articulate what is important to them about:

  • their quality of life
  • social, emotional and physical factors affecting them
  • symptoms relating to their care or treatment.

Patient reported measures acknowledge that consumers may value different outcomes than their healthcare providers, and encourages them to give feedback they may not normally provide during consultations.1

They can help you start a conversation about their care and treatment decisions, so people become more engaged in their healthcare, participate in shared decision making and enjoy better outcomes.2

I wasn’t sure if I should talk to my doctor about these things, but doing the questions made me realise they do want to know—it gave me the confidence to start the conversation, and now things are much better.

My practice is more efficient now because my patients fill out the PROMs in advance instead of me asking and writing it down during the consultation. It helps me understand what my patient is coming to see me about and what questions they want to ask me

Types of patient reported measures

There are two types of patient reported measures. The type you use will depend on whether you are measuring the consumer’s health outcomes, or their healthcare experience.

Patient Reported Outcome Measures

Patient Reported Outcome Measures (PROMs) use standardised and validated tools to measure consumers’ health outcomes, health-related quality of life and condition-specific aspects of health. They help you understand how their illness or care affects their physical, mental and emotional health and wellbeing.

Patient Reported Experience Measures

Patient Reported Experience Measures (PREMs) use validated, anonymous and de-identified surveys to capture people’s experiences with healthcare services. They help you understand how they feel, what is important to them and whether there are opportunities for improvement.

Why is it important?

Patient reported measures are a good indicator for overall patient outcomes and quality of life, especially for people with chronic conditions.3 There is a growing body of evidence that suggests using patient reported measures in routine care can provide the following benefits.1

Improves engagement

People who are engaged in their healthcare tend to have better outcomes, choose less costly interventions (such as going to a physiotherapist for back pain instead of the hospital emergency department) and have better healthcare experiences.3 4

Patient reported measures engage people by getting them to think about their health and what is important to them. Collecting surveys also shows people that their perspective is valued, which can improve trust.5 They can also show progress over time, which can motivate people to continue their treatment.

Enhances communication

Patient reported outcome measures provide person-centred information about your patients. This helps you understand what it important to them and what other issues you may need to deal with. They also help you understand what you need to know about them to provide the best care.

Patient reported measures can prompt a shy or intimidated person to speak up and give them permission to talk about how they are feeling and what matters to them. This leads to good communication, clinical decision making, shared decision making and shared care planning.3

Increases efficiency

Patient reported measures help people provide feedback about their healthcare goals and experiences, which can lead to enhanced efficiencies for the individual, the service and the healthcare system. As patient reported experience measures are anonymous, they are useful for identifying issues and making service-wide improvements.

Improves access to services

Patient reported measures can improve access to healthcare services, by addressing dynamic determinants of consumer enablement, which are based on people’s experiences when attempting to manage their own health.

People who have positive experiences with healthcare services are more likely to continue accessing them. They will also get more out of the services if they are engaged, motivated and have good communication with the service.

Increases health literacy

Regularly reflecting on people’s health and goals can improve health literacy, giving people a better understanding of what needs to be done and when they should access services to better manage their health.

ACI Patient Reported Measures Program


  1. Chen J. Integrated Care: Patient reported outcome measures and patient reported experience measures - a rapid scoping review. Chatswood, NSW: NSW Agency for Clinical Innovation; 2014.
  2. Williams K, Sansoni J, Morris D et al. Patient-reported outcome measures. [Literature review]. Sydney: ACSQHC; 2016 [updated 2016 Nov; cited 2017 Jan 16].
  3. NSW Agency for Clinical Innovation. Why Patient Reported Measures? Chatswood: NSW Agency for Clinical Innovation;n.d. [cited 2018 Jan 16].
  4. Basch E. Patient-Reported Outcomes — Harnessing Patients’ Voices to Improve Clinical Care. The New England Journal of Medicine. 2017;376(2):105-8.
  5. Dawson J, Doll H, Fitzpatrick R et al. The routine use of patient reported outcome measures in healthcare settings. BMJ. 2010;340:c186.


Patient reported measures resources