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Am J Manag Care. 2000 Jan;6(1):70-6.

An instrument to measure patient satisfaction with healthcare in an observational database: results of a validation study using data from CaPSURE.

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  • 1University of California, San Francisco 94109, USA.



To validate a satisfaction measure for use in longitudinal, prospective studies of patient care.


Patients with biopsy-confirmed prostate cancer (n = 228) who were enrolled in CaPSURE (Cancer of the Prostate Strategic Urologic Research Endeavor) completed a self-administered questionnaire that included a health-related quality-of-life and satisfaction measure. A subset of patients completed the questionnaire again within 30 days.


The satisfaction measure contained 6 individual subscales: overall satisfaction with care, contact with providers, confidence in providers, communication skills, humaneness, and a summary scale. Six items surveyed patients' willingness to participate in decision making (participatory style), and these were averaged into a single score. Variability, reliability, stability, and validity were evaluated.


Responses to the items varied substantially. The overall satisfaction scale demonstrated good internal consistency reliability (Cronbach alpha = 0.82) and moderate test-retest reliability (0.62), and it could discriminate between groups of individuals expected to differ with regard to satisfaction (by age and disease stage). Subscale internal consistency reliability (0.37-0.54) and stability (0.38-0.63) were weaker, suggesting that only a single scale should be reported. The participatory scale performed poorly and could not be recommended for future use.


The overall satisfaction measure developed for this study demonstrated good reliability and validity and should be useful in other population-based studies in conjunction with other outcome measures.

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