Evaluating patients’ perception of service quality at hospitals in nine Chinese cities by use of the ServQual scale
Authors: Min Li, Douglas Bruce Lowrie, Cheng-Yu Huang, Xiang-Chan Lu,Ying-Chu Zhu, Xing-Hua Wu, Mayila Shayiti, Qiong-Zhen Tan, Hua-Ling Yang, Si-Yuan Chen, Pan Zhao, Sheng-Hua He, Xiu-Rong Wang, Hong-Zhou Lu
Number of views: 258
Objective: To investigate patients’ perception of service quality at hospitals in nine Chinese
cities and propose some measures for improvement.
Methods: The ServQual scale method was used in a survey involving patients at out-patient
and in-patient facilities in Shanghai, Chongqing, Chengdu, Nanning, Guilin and Laibin of
Guangxi, Honghezhou of Yunnan, Wulumuqi of Xinjiang and Zhongshan of Guangdong.
The data collected were entered and analyzed using SPSS 20.0. Statistical analyses included
descriptive statistics, factor analyses, reliability analyses, product-moment correlations,
independent-sample t-tests, One-way ANOVA and regression analyses.
Results: The Kaiser-Meyer-Olkin value for the factor analysis of the scale was 0.979. The
Cronbach's α for the reliability analysis was 0.978. All the Pearson correlation coefficients were
positive and statistically significant. Visitors to out-patient facilities reported more positive
perception than visitors to in-patient facilities on tangibles (t = 4.168, P < 0.001) and reliability
(t = 1.979, P < 0.05). Patients of 60 years of age and above reported more positive perception
than those between 40 and 49 on reliability (F = 3.311, P = 0.010), assurances (F = 2.751,
P < 0.05) and empathy (F = 4.009, P = 0.003). For the five dimensions of the scale, patients
in Laibin, Guangxi reported the most positive perceived service quality, followed by patients
in Shanghai. On the other hand, patients in Chongqing and Nanning and Guilin of Guangxi
reported relatively poor perceptions of service quality. Standardized regression coefficients
showed statistically significant (P < 0.001) positive values for all ServQual dimensions.
Empathy (β = 0.267) and reliability (β = 0.239) most strongly predicted perception of service
Conclusions: Chinese patients perceived service quality as satisfactory. Hospitals in various
regions of China should enhance their awareness and ability to serve their patients.