BACKGROUND: There is growing interest in research on patient satisfaction with healthcare provider (HCP) communication as a measure of healthcare quality and HCPs' communication competency. This study aimed to determine the levels of patient satisfaction with healthcare provider-patient communication (HCP-PC) and its associated factors at the outpatient clinic at Hospital Kuala Lumpur.
METHODS: A cross-sectional study was conducted on a convenience sample in July 2012 using self-administered questionnaires for the data collection. Both overall and domain-specific satisfaction were measured, with the three domains being exchanging information (EI), socio-emotional behaviour (SB), and communication style (CS).
RESULTS: The findings show that 92.8% of the 283 respondents were satisfied with overall HCP-PC, 89.5% with EI, 91.3% with SB, and 72.2% with CS. Satisfaction was statistically higher among Malays for CS and higher among those with low education and poor health for EI, SB and CS. EI and overall communication satisfaction were also higher among patients who reported short wait times, and patients who were in gender concordance with their HCPs showed higher SB satisfaction.
CONCLUSION: Basic and continuous communication skills training and patient activation programs should be established to increase patient satisfaction. Health information technology use should be actively promoted to allow for structured and standardised information exchange between HCPs and patients.
KEYWORDS: communication; patient satisfaction; primary care
Study site: outpatient clinic at Hospital Kuala Lumpur
Azizam NA, Shamsuddin K
* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.