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Measuring Patient Trust in Public versus Private Physicians in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA)

Authors Aljaffary A, AlThumairi A, Almarhoon L, Alsaawi G

Received 12 October 2020

Accepted for publication 22 December 2020

Published 26 January 2021 Volume 2021:14 Pages 151—159


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Scott Fraser

Afnan Aljaffary, Arwa AlThumairi, Lojain Almarhoon, Ghalyah Alsaawi

Department of Health Information Management & Technology, Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University (IAU), Dammam, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Correspondence: Afnan Aljaffary
Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University (IAU), King Faisal Street, Dammam 3421, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Tel +966 133331362

Background: This study aims to assess and compare patient trust in public vs private physicians and to determine the factors that can affect the level of trust in the context of the KSA.
Methods: A cross-sectional study was carried out in the KSA to assess patient trust in physicians. A questionnaire was administered in both Arabic and English to patients above 18 years of age via online channels.
Results: A statistically significant difference was found between the level of trust in public vs private physicians, where the public physicians showed higher patients’ trust scores compared to private physicians, where the mean was 2.51 (SD=0.60) and 2.29 (SD=0.56), respectively, P-value< 0.001. A statistically significant difference was also found between self-assessment health status (SAHS) groups (F(3)=11.429, P=0.010). Other factors were not significantly associated.
Conclusion: This study found that public physicians engender a higher level of patient trust than private physicians. A further qualitative study should be conducted in the future to investigate the reasons behind the high trust in public physicians in the KSA.
Practice Implications: The results of this study open doors for new investigations that might result in the implementation of new interventions to promote patient trust in the healthcare journey in KSA.

Keywords: patient trust, patient-centered care, trust in physicians, KSA

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