Advertisement

Patient satisfaction of female and male users of veterans health administration services

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: To compare patient satisfaction of male and female users of Veterans Health Administration (VHA) services.

DESIGN: Cross-sectional study based on secondary analysis of data from VHA’s Survey of Healthcare Experiences of Patients (SHEP).

PATIENTS: National random sample of 107,995 outpatients and 112,817 inpatients in FY2004.

MEASURES: Patient’s ratings of overall quality (OQ) and unique dimensions of satisfaction. Sociodemographic and health-related patient attributes.

ANALYSIS: Bivariate unadjusted analyses of the association between gender and other patient attributes and the outcomes of OQ and dimensions of satisfaction were conducted followed by multivariate analyses for each outcome, adjusting for demographic and health variables.

RESULTS: Significant differences between female and male reporting of satisfaction were found in the unadjusted analyses with males showing greater levels of satisfaction than females (P<.05). These differences disappeared or became smaller for both outpatient and inpatient services, after adjusting for covariates. For 6 of the inpatient dimensions (Transitions, Physical Comfort, Involvement Family and Friends, Courtesy, Coordination, and Access) males had higher satisfaction than females after statistical adjustment.

CONCLUSIONS: After adjustment for patient attributes, female VHA outpatients report similar OQ with VHA services as male patients. The fact that some inpatient dimensions of satisfaction continued to show effects favoring males even after adjustment suggests areas for continued focus in improving health care quality. Covariate adjustment is essential for evaluating satisfaction with health care services. Breaking down overall satisfaction into independent aspects of services is useful. The SHEP survey has provided a useful tool for evaluating and improving satisfaction among its VHA veteran users.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.

Access options

Buy single article

Instant unlimited access to the full article PDF.

US$ 39.95

Price includes VAT for USA

Subscribe to journal

Immediate online access to all issues from 2019. Subscription will auto renew annually.

US$ 99

This is the net price. Taxes to be calculated in checkout.

References

  1. 1.

    Crow R, Gage H, Hampson S, et al. The measurement of satisfaction with healthcare: implications for practice from a systematic review of the literature. Health Technol Assessment. 2002;32:45–51.

  2. 2.

    Weech-Maldonado R, Morales LS, Elliott M, Spritzer K, Marshall G, Hays RD. Race/ethnicity, language, and patients’ assessments of care in Medicaid managed care. Health Serv Res. 2003;38:789–808.

  3. 3.

    Campbell JL, Ramsay J, Green J. Age, gender, socioeconomic, and ethnic differences in patients’ assessments of primary care. Qual Health Care. 2001;10:90–5.

  4. 4.

    Zaslavsky AM, Zaborski AB, Shaul DL, Cioffi MJ, Cleary PD. Adjusting performance measures to ensure equitable plan comparisons. Health Care Financing Rev. 2001;22:109–26.

  5. 5.

    Sargeant A, Kaehler J. Factors of patient satisfaction with medical services: the case of G.P. practices in the U.K. Health Mark Q. 1998;16:55–77.

  6. 6.

    Weisman CS, Henderson JT, Schifrin E, Romans M, Clancy CM. Gender and patient satisfaction in managed care plans: analysis of the 1999 HEDIS/CAHPS 2.0 H Adult Survey. Womens Health Issues. 2001;11:401–15.

  7. 7.

    Rahmqvist M. Patient satisfaction in relation to age, health status and other background factors: a model for comparisons of care visits. Int J Qual Health Care. 2001;13:385–90.

  8. 8.

    Blenkiron P, Hammill CA. What determines patients’ satisfaction with their mental health care and quality of life? Postgrad Med J. 2003;79:337–40.

  9. 9.

    Willits FK, Crider DM. Health rating and life satisfaction in the later middle years. J Gerontol. 1988;43:S172–6.

  10. 10.

    Weisman CS, Rich DE, Rogers J, Crawford KG, Grayson CE, Henderson JT. Gender and patient satisfaction with primary care: tuning in to women in quality measurement. Womens Health Gend Based Med. 2000;9:657–65.

  11. 11.

    Foss C. Gender bias in nursing care? Gender related differences in patient satisfaction with the quality of nursing care. Scand J Caring Sci. 2002;16:19–26.

  12. 12.

    Hoff RA, Rosenheck RA, Meterko M, Wilson NJ. Mental illness as a predictor of satisfaction with inpatient care at Veterans Affairs hospitals. Psych Serv. 1999;50:680–5.

  13. 13.

    Kressin NR, Skinner K, Sullivan L, et al. Patient satisfaction with the Department of Veterans Affairs Health Care: do women differ from men? Mil Med. 1999;164:283–8.

  14. 14.

    Turpin RS, Darcy LA, Weaver FM, Kruse K. Assessing health care delivery to male versus female veterans. Women Health. 1992;18:81–95.

  15. 15.

    Rothman GH. Needs of female patients in a veterans psychiatric hospital. Soc Work. 1984;29:380–5.

  16. 16.

    Bean-Mayberry BA, Chang C-CH, McNeil MA, Whittle J, Hayes PM, Scholle SH. Patient satisfaction in women’s clinics versus traditional primary care clinics in the Veterans Health Administration. J Gen Intern Med. 2003;18:175–81.

  17. 17.

    Cleary PD, Edgman-Levitan S, Roberts M, et al. Patients evaluate their hospital care: a national survey. Health Affairs. 1991;10:254–67.

  18. 18.

    Young GJ, Charns MP, Barbour GL. Quality improvement in the US Veterans Health Administration. International Journal for Quality in Health Care. 1997;9:183–8.

  19. 19.

    Perlin JP, Kolodner RM, Roswell RH. The Veterans Health Administration: quality, value, accountability, and information as transforming strategies for patient-centered care. Am J Manage Care. 2004;10:828–36.

  20. 20.

    Jha AK, Perlin JB, Steinman MA, Peabody JW, Ayanian JZ. Quality of ambulatory care for women and men in the Veterans Affairs health care system. J Gen Intern Med. 2005;20:762–5.

  21. 21.

    Yano EM, Washington DL, Goldzweig C, Caffrey C, Turner C. The organization and delivery of women’s health care in Department of Veterans Affairs medical center. Women’s Health Issues. 2003;13:55–61.

  22. 22.

    Cleary PD, McNiel BJ. Patient satisfaction as an indicator of quality care. Inquiry. 1988;25:25–36.

  23. 23.

    Hall JA, Dornam MC. Patient sociodemographic characteristics as predictors of satisfaction and medical care: a meta-analyses. Soc Sci Med. 1990;30:811–8.

  24. 24.

    Ren XS, Kazis L, Lee A, Rogers W, Pendergrass S. Health status and satisfaction with health care: a longitudinal study among patients served by the Veterans Health Administration. Am J Med Qual. 2001;16:166–73.

  25. 25.

    Kerr EA, Smith DM, Kaplan SH, Hayward RA. The association between three different measures of health status and satisfaction among patients with diabetes. Med Care Res Rev. 2003;60:158–77.

  26. 26.

    Covinsky KE, Rosenthal GE, Chren MM, et al. The relationship between health status changes and patient satisfaction in older hospitalized medical patient. J Gen Intern Med. 1998;13:223–9.

  27. 27.

    Young GJ, Meterko M, Desai KR. Patient satisfaction with hospital care: effects of demographic and institutional characteristics. Med Care. 2000;38:325–34.

  28. 28.

    Meterko M, Mohr DC, Young GJ. Teamwork culture and patient satisfaction in hospitals. Med Care. 2004;42:492–8.

Download references

Author information

Correspondence to Dr. Steven M. Wright PhD.

Additional information

The authors have no conflict of interest to declare.

The views expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Wright, S.M., Craig, T., Campbell, S. et al. Patient satisfaction of female and male users of veterans health administration services. J GEN INTERN MED 21, S26–S32 (2006) doi:10.1111/j.1525-1497.2006.00371.x

Download citation

Key words

  • patient satisfaction
  • service quality
  • gender
  • veterans