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  1. Tim Albert

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Q: How can we find out if patients are satisfied?

Researchers from the Picker Institute Europe sent questionnaires to 3592 patients in five hospitals in Scotland and 2249 (65%) responded. Nine out of 10 said that they were happy with their care as inpatients, and the major determinants of satisfaction were found to be physical comfort, emotional support, and respect for patient preferences. However, the questionnaire also showed that many of these patients identified specific problems related to their care. The authors suggest that patient satisfaction scores, and the related issues of willingness to recommend a hospital to others, present a “limited and optimistic” picture. “Detailed questions about specific aspects of patients’ experiences are more likely to be useful for monitoring the performance of various hospital departments and wards and could point to ways in which health care delivery could …

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  • The figure on the front cover is reproduced from Dickie H, “Tray and Trolley Setting”, Livingston Ltd, London, 1963.

  • Compiled by Tim Albert

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