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Womens Health Issues. 2018 May - Jun;28(3):281-285. doi: 10.1016/j.whi.2018.01.001. Epub 2018 Feb 21.

Physician Gender Is Associated with Press Ganey Patient Satisfaction Scores in Outpatient Gynecology.

Author information

1
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, California. Electronic address: lrgupta@stanford.edu.
2
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, California.
3
Office of Faculty Development and Diversity, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, California.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Patient satisfaction is gaining increasing attention as a quality measure in health care, but the methods used to assess it may negatively impact women physicians.

OBJECTIVE:

Our objective was to examine the relationship between physician gender and patient satisfaction with outpatient gynecology care as measured by the Press Ganey patient satisfaction survey.

STUDY DESIGN:

This cross-sectional study analyzed 909 Press Ganey patient satisfaction surveys linked to outpatient gynecology visits at a single academic institution (March 2013-August 2014), including self-reported demographics and satisfaction. Surveys are delivered in a standardized fashion electronically and by mail. Surveys were completed by 821 unique patients and 13,780 gynecology visits occurred during the study period. The primary outcome variable was likelihood to recommend (LTR) a physician. We used χ2 tests of independence to assess the effect of demographic concordance on LTR and two generalized estimating equations models were run clustered by physician, with topbox physician LTR as the outcome variable. Analysis was performed in SAS Enterprise Guide 7.1 (SAS, Inc., Cary, NC).

RESULTS:

Nine hundred nine surveys with complete demographic data were completed by women during the study period (mean age, 49.3 years). Age- and race-concordant patient-physician pairs received significantly higher proportions of top LTR score than discordant pairs (p = .014 and p < .0001, respectively). In contrast, gender-concordant pairs received a significantly lower proportion of top scores than discordant pairs (p = .027). In the generalized estimating equations model adjusting for health care environment, only gender remained statistically significant. Women physicians had significantly lower odds (47%) of receiving a top score (odds ratio, 0.53; 95% CI, 0.37-0.78; p = .001).

CONCLUSIONS:

Women gynecologists are 47% less likely to receive top patient satisfaction scores compared with their male counterparts owing to their gender alone, suggesting that gender bias may impact the results of patient satisfaction questionnaires. Therefore, the results of this and similar questionnaires should be interpreted with great caution until the impact on women physicians is better understood.

PMID:
29429946
DOI:
10.1016/j.whi.2018.01.001
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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