Cover: Outpatient Satisfaction

Outpatient Satisfaction

The Role of Nominal Versus Perceived Communication

Published In: Health Services Research, v. 44, no. 5, pt. 1, Oct. 2009, p. 1735-1749

Posted on 2009

by Megan K. Beckett, Marc N. Elliott, Andrea S. Richardson, Rita Mangione-Smith

OBJECTIVE: To examine the simultaneous associations of parent and coder assessments of communication events with parent satisfaction. STUDY SETTING: Five hundred twenty-two pediatrician-patient encounters. STUDY DESIGN: Parents reported on post-visit satisfaction with care and whether four communication events occurred. Raters also coded communication events from videotapes. Multivariate analyses predicted parent satisfaction. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Satisfaction was greater when parents perceived at least three communication events. Parent and coder reports were nearly uncorrelated. Coder-assessed communication events not perceived by parents were unrelated to parent satisfaction. CONCLUSIONS: Parents are more satisfied when most or all of the expected parent-physician communications occur. A successful pediatrician-parent communication event is one that a parent recognizes as having occurred; it is not merely one that a trained observer says occurred.

This report is part of the RAND external publication series. Many RAND studies are published in peer-reviewed scholarly journals, as chapters in commercial books, or as documents published by other organizations.

RAND is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.