Background: Patient satisfaction is an attitude resulting from a person's general orientation towards a total experience of health care. It is a key determinant and a legitimate measure for quality of care. In developing countries, satisfaction studies were conducted mainly on nursing care and outpatient services.
Objective: This study aims to measure and describe the level of patient satisfaction within inpatient health care services.
Methods: Across sectional study design was conducted from 8 May 2011 to 2 June 2011 at Jimma University Specialized Hospital. Systematic random sampling technique was employed to recruit participants. A standardized structured questionnaire developed by reviewing similar literatures was used to assess the level of patient satisfaction towards the inpatient services. SPSS version 19 statistical packages were used for data management and analysis.
Result: A total of 189 patients participated. The proportion of overall net patient satisfaction was 117 (61.9%). Majority of the respondents 148 (78.3%) reported that they got the kind of service they anticipated. Cleanliness of the ward 145 (76.7%) and time to get back to home 27 (14.3%) were found to have the highest and the lowest proportion of satisfied respondents, respectively. Patients with no formal education 60 (76.9%) and patients from the rural areas 75 (68.8%) were satisfied higher than those from their counterparts. Patients at medical 22 (61.1%) and ophthalmology 10 (62.5%) wards were less satisfied than patients in other departments.
Conclusion: Nearly two third of the patients were found to be satisfied by the service they received from the hospital. Most of the patients found to be dissatisfied with the nursing, pharmacy and laboratory services, while some others were still dissatisfied with the level of health education, communication and information they received about their illness. Therefore, the hospital administration system should best work on new innovative approach to keep and improve the administrative system, waiting time, hospital stay, hospital accommodation, access for medications and laboratory services to bring patient satisfaction. Nurses and physicians should have to work best to improve health education, communication and understanding between doctors/nurses and patients. Hospital reformation and modern hospital administration system could work best to keep and improve the level of patient satisfaction.