Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health

, Volume 18, Issue 4, pp 810–818 | Cite as

Measurement of Perceived and Technical Quality of Care for Depression in Racially and Ethnically Diverse Groups

  • H. Stephen Leff
  • Clifton Chow
  • Dow A. WiemanEmail author
  • Laysha Ostrow
  • Dharma E. Cortés
  • Treniece Harris
Original Paper


Measurement of patient satisfaction is now considered essential for providing patient centered care and is an important tool for addressing health care disparities. However, little is known about how ethnically and racially diverse (ERD) groups differ in how they perceive quality, and widely used instruments for measuring perceived quality give little attention to cultural elements of care. This study examined the relationship between the culturally determined beliefs and expectations of four ERD groups (African Americans, Latinos, Portuguese-speakers, and Haitians, total N = 160) and the technical quality of treatment for depression provided in four “culturally-specific” primary care clinics. Using data from the Experiences of Care and Health Outcomes survey, chart reviews and focus groups, the study addressed a set of questions related to the psychometric properties of perceived care measures and the technical quality of care. The groups differed in preferred cultural elements except all preferred inclusion of religion. They did not differ in overall perceived quality. Technical quality was higher for Portuguese and Haitians than for African Americans and Latinos. Implications of group differences for measuring quality are discussed.


Ethnic groups Healthcare quality assessment Depression treatment 



Support for this study was provided by a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The authors wish to thank the staff of participating Cambridge Health Alliance clinics for their help in facilitating the study and Ben Cichocki of the Human Services Research Institute for his feedback.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • H. Stephen Leff
    • 1
  • Clifton Chow
    • 1
  • Dow A. Wieman
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Laysha Ostrow
    • 3
  • Dharma E. Cortés
    • 4
  • Treniece Harris
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical SchoolCambridge Health AllianceCambridgeUSA
  2. 2.Human Services Research Institute (HSRI)CambridgeUSA
  3. 3.Department of Mental HealthJohns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public HealthBaltimoreUSA
  4. 4.Mauricio Gastón Institute for Latino Community Development and Public PolicyUniversity of Massachusetts BostonBostonUSA

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