The measurement of satisfaction with health care: implications for practice from a systematic review of the literature
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Original versionCrow R, Gage H, Hampson S, Hart J, Kimber A, Storey L, et al. The measurement of satisfaction with health care: implications for practice from a systematic review of the literature. Health Technol Assess 2003;6(32). https://doi.org/10.3310/hta6320
Satisfaction and its measurement are important for public policy analysts, healthcare managers, practitioners and users. Despite problems with establishing a tangible definition of “satisfaction” and difficulties with its measurement, the concept continues to be widely used. In many instances when investigators claim to be measuring satisfaction, more general evaluations of healthcare services are being undertaken. Satisfaction can be measured indirectly by asking users to rate the quality of services they have received, or report their experiences. Selection (or deselection) of providers is an objective behavioural indicator of satisfaction in healthcare systems where consumers’ choices are not constrained. Healthcare is a multi-dimensional service, but many means of measuring satisfaction do not show consumers’ relative preferences for different attributes, even though such information is important for cost-effective decision-making.