Consumer satisfaction with primary care provider choice and associated trust

Ming Ying Lisa Chu-Weininger, The University of Texas School of Public Health


Trust is important in medical relationships and for the achievement of better health outcomes. Developments in managed care in the recent years are believed to affect the quality of healthcare services delivery and to undermine trust in the healthcare provider. Physician choice has been identified as a strong predictor of provider trust but has not been studied in detail. Consumer satisfaction with primary care provider (PCP) choice includes having or not having physician choice. This dissertation developed a conceptual framework that guided the study of consumer satisfaction with PCP choice as a predictor of provider trust, and conducted secondary data analyses examining the association between PCP choice and trust, by identifying factors related to PCP choice satisfaction, and their relative importance in predicting provider trust. The study specific aims were: (1) to determine variables related to the factors: consumer characteristics and health status, information and consumer decision-making, consumer trust in providers in general and trust in the insurer, health plan financing and plan characteristics, and provider characteristics that may relate to PCP choice satisfaction; (2) to determine if the factors in aim one are related to PCP choice satisfaction; and (3) to analyze the association between PCP choice satisfaction and provider trust, controlling for potential confounders. Analyses were based on secondary data from a random national telephone survey in 1999, of residential households in the United States which included respondents aged over 20 and who had at least two visits with a health professional in the past two years. Among 1,117 eligible households interviewed (response rate 51.4%), 564 randomly selected to respond to insurer related questions made up the study sample. Analyses using descriptive statistics, and linear and logistic regressions found continual effective care and interaction with the PCP beyond the medical setting most predictive of PCP choice satisfaction. Four PCP choice satisfaction factors were also predictive of provider trust. Findings highlighted the importance of the PCP's professional and interpersonal competencies for the development of sustainable provider trust. Future research on the access, utilization, cognition, and helpfulness of provider specific information will further our understanding of consumer choice and trust.

Subject Area

Health care|Public health

Recommended Citation

Chu-Weininger, Ming Ying Lisa, "Consumer satisfaction with primary care provider choice and associated trust" (2005). Texas Medical Center Dissertations (via ProQuest). AAI3178685.