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The relationship between patient satisfaction with service quality and survival in pancreatic cancer

Authors Gupta D, Markman M, Rodeghier, Lis C

Received 8 September 2012

Accepted for publication 4 October 2012

Published 1 November 2012 Volume 2012:6 Pages 765—772


Checked for plagiarism Yes

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Peer reviewer comments 2

Digant Gupta, Maurie Markman, Mark Rodeghier, Christopher G Lis

Cancer Treatment Centers of America®, Schaumburg, IL, USA

Purpose: Despite the recognized relevance of symptom burden in pancreatic cancer, there has been limited exploration of whether an individual patient's satisfaction with the overall quality of care received might influence outcome. We evaluated the relationship between patient satisfaction with health service quality and survival in patients with pancreatic cancer.
Patients and methods: A random sample of 496 pancreatic cancer patients treated at Cancer Treatment Centers of America® (CTCA) between July 2007 and December 2010. A questionnaire that covered several dimensions of patient satisfaction was administered. Items were measured on a seven-point Likert scale ranging from “completely dissatisfied” to “completely satisfied.” Patient survival was the primary end point. Cox regression was used to evaluate the association between patient satisfaction and survival.
Results: The response rate for this study was 72%. Of the 496 patients, 345 (69.6%) reported being “completely satisfied” with the care provided. Median overall survival was 7.9 months. On univariate analysis, patients reporting they were “completely satisfied” experienced superior survival compared with patients stating they were “not completely satisfied” (hazard ratio = 0.62; 95% confidence interval: 0.50–0.77; P < 0.001). On multivariate analysis controlling for stage at diagnosis, treatment history, and specific CTCA treatment center, “completely satisfied” patients demonstrated significantly lower mortality (hazard ratio = 0.63; 95% confidence interval: 0.51–0.79; P < 0.001).
Conclusion: In this exploratory analysis, patient satisfaction with health service quality was an independent predictor of survival in pancreatic cancer. Further exploration of a possible meaningful relationship between patient satisfaction with the care they have received and outcome in this difficult malignancy is indicated.

Keywords: health services, oncology, prognosis, survival

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