Journal Article

Patient satisfaction with access in two interprofessional academic family medicine clinics

Michelle Howard, Gina Agarwal and Linda Hilts

in Family Practice

Volume 26, issue 5, pages 407-412
Published in print October 2009 | ISSN: 0263-2136
Published online July 2009 | e-ISSN: 1460-2229 | DOI:
Patient satisfaction with access in two interprofessional academic family medicine clinics

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Background. Satisfaction with access to primary care is one component of overall patient satisfaction. The objectives of this paper were to describe patient satisfaction with access in interprofessional family practices and to examine predictors of being less than satisfied with access.

Methods. A survey was mailed to 770 randomly selected patients in two academic interprofessional family practices in Hamilton, Canada. Most items were positively worded statements on a five-point scale from strongly agree to strongly disagree. Outcomes were the proportion of respondents agreeing with statements regarding access. For items where ≥25% of respondents did not agree, we examined socio-demographic predictors of disagreement using multiple variable logistic regression.

Results. The response rate was 49.9% (384/770). One-quarter or more of respondents did not agree that they received an explanation if the appointment was delayed at the office, obtain urgent appointments, obtain prescription refills without a visit or that wait times at the office were reasonable. Predictors of not agreeing included younger age, being married or single, more educated, employed and of non-white ethnicity. Less than 10 minutes was the most satisfactory wait time for the appointment to begin; however, the most common wait time reported was 11–20 minutes. One-quarter of respondents had visited the weekend/holiday clinic in the past 12 months; however, use was not associated with perceived ability to obtain an appointment in 1–2 days.

Conclusions. While satisfaction was generally high, some aspects of access could be improved by changes in practice organization or patient education regarding expectations.

Keywords: Access; patient satisfaction; primary care

Journal Article.  3429 words. 

Subjects: Primary Care

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