The practice orientations of physicians and patients: the effect of doctor-patient congruence on satisfaction

Patient Educ Couns. 2000 Jan;39(1):49-59. doi: 10.1016/s0738-3991(99)00090-7.


This study investigated the extent to which the individual orientations of physicians and patients and the congruence between them are associated with patient satisfaction. A survey was mailed to 400 physicians and 1020 of their patients. All respondents filled out the Patient-Practitioner Orientation Scale, which measures the roles that doctors and patients believe each should play in the course of their interaction. Patients also rated their satisfaction with their doctors. Among patients, we found that females and those who were younger, more educated, and healthier were significantly more patient-centered. However, none of these variables were significantly related to satisfaction. Among physicians, females were more patient-centered, and years in practice was related to satisfaction and orientation in a non-linear fashion. The congruence data indicated that patients were highly satisfied when their physicians either had a matching orientation or were more patient-centered. However, patients whose doctors were not as patient-centered were significantly less satisfied.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Attitude of Health Personnel*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Job Satisfaction*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Patient Satisfaction*
  • Patient-Centered Care / standards*
  • Physician-Patient Relations*