Patient perceptions of the quality of services provided is a key factor (along with cost effectiveness) in determining a health care organization's competitive advantage and survival. This article examines the advantages, disadvantages, and problems associated with nine different methods of measuring patient satisfaction with service quality. The appropriateness of each of these techniques under different organizational conditions is also discussed. The article concludes with guidelines for measurement of patient satisfaction and implementation of managerial follow-up.
Robert C. Ford, Ph.D., is Professor and Chair, Hospitality Management Department, College of Business Administration, University of Central Florida, Orlando, Florida.
Susan A. Bach, Ph.D., is Assistant Professor, Hospitality Management Department, College of Business Administration, University of Central Florida, Orlando, Florida.
Myron D. Fottler, Ph.D., is Professor and Director, Ph.D. Program in Administration-Health Services, Department of Health Services Administration, School of Health Related Professions, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, Alabama.
The authors thank Dawn M. Wilbur, a doctoral student in Administration-Health Services at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, for her assistance with this article, and Professor John Swan of the School of Business, University of Alabama at Birmingham, for his insightful comments on an earlier version of this article.