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Family Medicine & Primary Care Review
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vol. 17
Original paper

Do patients want to evaluate the quality of health care? A short survey among patients

Ludmiła Marcinowicz
Zbigniew Gugnowski
Julia Strumiło
Sławomir Chlabicz

Family Medicine & Primary Care Review 2015; 17, 1: 28–32
Online publish date: 2016/04/11
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Background. There are numerous studies concerning patient satisfaction; however, they do not include any reports on whether patients want to participate in such studies and whether they see themselves as evaluators of health care.

Objectives. To learn patients’ opinions on the legitimacy of engaging patients in the evaluation of such care and their readiness to participate in studies on patients’ satisfaction.

Material and methods. A survey was carried out among adult patients at 10 primary health care centres in the north-eastern part of Poland. The study tool was a survey questionnaire comprising both closed-ended and open-ended questions. 700 questionnaires were distributed, and 570 of them (81.4%) were filled in correctly and returned.

Results. Most of the respondents (84.2%) gave a positive answer to the question whether patients should evaluate the quality of health care, whereas 66.3% of them declared their will to participate in studies on patients’ satisfaction (in the form of filling in a questionnaire). The differences were statistically significant. The main reasons for patients evaluating the quality of health care are the right a patient has as a tax payer and the resulting improvement of health care quality. The lack of medical knowledge on the part of patients was a frequently mentioned reason against patients being “evaluators” of care.

Conclusions. Most of the respondents are of the opinion that patients should evaluate the quality of health care, but significantly fewer declare their participation in studies on patient satisfaction. From a patient’s perspective, the evaluation of health care quality should concentrate on the elements which do not require medical expertise.

quality improvement, patient, opinion, patient satisfaction, questionnaires

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