Evaluation and exploration of factors that ιnfluence patient satisfaction with the health centre of Atalanti
Background: Patient satisfaction is directly associated with the quality of health services and constitutes an indicator for its measurement. Recording patients' views, usually through structured questionnaires, is a main method of evaluating the health system. Aim: To evaluate patient satisfaction in order to bring to light the weaknesses and shortcomings of the health centre of Atalanti, and to identify factors associated with satisfaction with the health Centre, in order to improve and upgrade its health services. Method: An appropriate questionnaire was developed for data collection, which was completed by the method of personal interview. The study was conducted during the period May to July 2009 with 150 participants, users of the health centre, aged over 18 years. Results: Patient satisfaction with the health centre of Atalanti was found to be high, since almost 90% of respondants declared themselves to be moderately to very satisfied with the quality of services, the directions they were given and the time spent with them by the doctors. Satisfaction was less for the sufficiency of the number of doctors (64.6%), and for the health centre infrastructure (75%). Of the factors that were found to influence the satisfaction with the infrastructure, the most significant was the age of the patient, with those over 65 years indicating satisfaction in a greater proportion (89.1%). Regarding factors affecting the evaluation of the medical staff, the most significant appeared to be the patient's occupation for the satisfaction with the sufficient number of staff, and age for the quality of services provided by the medical staff: 88.2% of those in manual occupations and 51.3% in non-manual occupations declared satisfaction with the sufficient number of doctors (x 2=12.666, p=0.005). In addition, the elderly (65 years and older) indicated a greater level of satisfaction with the quality of medical services, specifically 96.4%, compared with 92.1% and 75.4% in the age groups 45-64 years and 18-44 years, respectively (x 2=12.127, p=0.002). Conclusions: It was confirmed that older people and those with a lower socio-economic profile tend to be more satisfied with the health services provided by a provincial health centre.