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Namgyal Kyulo


Namgyal Kyulo, M.P.H., Principal Administrative Analyst IINamgyal Kyulo, M.P.H., Principal Administrative Analyst II

Bringing Quality and Culture to UCLA

Kyulo works to produce and interpret our patient satisfaction survey. A native of Tibet, he was instrumental in inviting the Dalai Lama, the Tibetan spiritual and political leader and Nobel Peace Prize winner, to UCLA.

How do you get information about patient satisfaction?
I measure and report on patient satisfaction at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center and UCLA Medical Center, Santa Monica. Every inpatient at Ronald Reagan and Santa Monica, and most of the outpatients, receive a two-to-six-page survey that asks them about their experiences: How was your doctor's behavior? Was your doctor courteous? Was your doctor respectful? How was your nurse's behavior? Did your nurse provide explanations about your medication, potential side effects, and what it is for? How was the call button response? Were you helped getting to the bathroom?

We get responses back on 20 to 35 percent of the surveys we send out. My job is to create the health system's patient experience surveys, use my knowledge of biostatistics, data analysis and programming to interpret the data and translate them into something meaningful. I then produce a clean report so the hospital leadership team, director and managers can understand what they need to do to improve.

How does UCLA measure up?
Overall, Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center is number one among University Healthsystem Consortium Hospitals, which includes 76 academic medical centers. On two global measures where the questions are "Would you recommend this hospital to friends and family members?" and "How would you rate this hospital?" UCLA ranks number one. I would say we're very good!

What do you most enjoy about your job?
I like my job because it has direct impact on the hospital performance improvement program and positively impacts the experiences of our patients. We do something called "patient rounding" when we go into their rooms, the labs, etc., and ask about their experiences. I enjoy my direct involvement and I like it when the patients are satisfied with the services they receive at UCLA.

How did you become involved in inviting Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama, to UCLA?
About five years ago, I was president of the Tibetan Association of Southern California, which has about 300 members and a mission to protect and preserve Tibetan culture. During that time, UC Santa Barbara had invited the Dalai Lama to its campus. I accompanied the representative of the Offices of Tibet, who coordinates between His Holiness's office and outside organizations, on a site visit to UC Santa Barbara and I thought, "Why can't we do that?" When I asked the Office of Tibet about inviting His Holiness to UCLA, he didn't say yes and wasn't encouraging because so many universities were applying to His Holiness to come to their campuses. But then I contacted the UCLA Center for Buddhist Studies, about the idea and thery were very interested. When Chancellor Gene Block agreed to lend his support, we met together a few times to write a proposal or invitation, which we presented to His Holiness at a brief meeting. We were thrilled when His Holiness accepted.

What was it like to meet with the Dalai Lama?
For Tibetans, it is an honor and a blessing to meet with His Holiness, the Dalai Lama, so I consider myself very fortunate. It is also my duty to protect the Tibetan culture and help it flourish in any way I can. His Holiness told me "you are an ambassador, you represent Tibet, so do good in anything you do." Everyone knows they have to do good for self, family, job, career and community. But if you are told by His Holiness to do a very good job because you represent Tibet, that's very empowering. I think of that every day.

What are your other hobbies or interests?
I play basketball every Sunday and like to take short trips with my family. We send our children to Tibetan school every Sunday to learn about Tibetan culture and language. I also like going to temple. It's more peaceful there.

To learn more quality and patient satisfaction at UCLA Health, click here.