Hospital accreditation and patient satisfaction: testing the relationship

J Healthc Qual. 2004 Jan-Feb;26(1):46-51. doi: 10.1111/j.1945-1474.2004.tb00471.x.


This article describes a study that examines the relationship between two principal measures of institutional healthcare quality: accreditation scores and independently measured patient-satisfaction ratings. This study involved a retrospective review and comparison of summative and selected categorical hospital accreditation scores from the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations and independently measured patient satisfaction ratings. A total of 41 acute care, 200-plus bed, not-for-profit hospitals in New Jersey and eastern Pennsylvania were included. Correlation and multiple-regression statistical methods were employed. The results revealed no relationship between these quality indicators on a summative level and no meaningful pattern categorical relationships. This finding suggests a disassociation between these two quality indicators, thus supporting the use of a balanced scorecard approach to hospital quality management. The study also revealed certain shortcomings in these two quality indicators, relating to insufficient score variability, which should be considered by those using such data to manage quality outcomes.

MeSH terms

  • Accreditation*
  • Health Services Research
  • Hospitals / standards*
  • Humans
  • Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations
  • New Jersey
  • Patient Satisfaction*
  • Pennsylvania
  • Retrospective Studies
  • United States