Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to conceptualize hospital service quality (SQ) into its component dimensions from the perspectives of patients and their attendants; and to analyze the relationship between SQ and customer satisfaction (CS) in government and private hospitals in India. Design/methodology/approach – The study employs questionnaire‐survey approach to obtain the perceptions of patients and attendants. The instruments developed have been validated using tests for reliability, validity and uni‐dimensionality. Data collected have been analyzed by using statistical techniques such as bi‐variate correlation and multiple regression. Findings – Patients and attendants treat the interpersonal aspect of care as the most important one, as they cannot fully evaluate the technical quality of healthcare services. The study also revealed that the hospital service providers have to understand the needs of both patients and attendants in order to gather a holistic view of their services. Research limitations/implications – Results of the study are dependent on the nature and number of respondents, i.e. the study has captured only the perceptions of service receivers – patients and attendants; and sample size of the study – 204 patients and 204 attendants – due to limited response rate and other operational constraints. Practical implications – The present study allows the hospital administrators to benchmark their hospitals with those of their competitors by comparing the mean values of the dimensions of SQ. The study also allows a comparison of the performance of government and private hospitals in terms of the services offered. Originality/value – The study conceptualizes hospital SQ as an eight‐dimensional framework. Further, it also presents the relationship between SQ and CS in Indian Government and private hospitals.
Benchmarking: An International Journal – Emerald Publishing
Published: Oct 26, 2010
Keywords: Customer satisfaction; Hospitals; Patients; Customer services quality; India
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