Department of Family and Community Services

3.1 Perceptions of health care

share on Facebook share on Twitter share on Yammershare by email

Perceptions of whether health professionals listen carefully, treat you with respect and spend enough time

Current position

In 2011-12, the vast majority of people reported positive perceptions of care by medical and dental professionals.

88 percent of women and 90 percent of men felt that GPs listened carefully; 92 percent of women and 93 percent of men felt GPs treated them with respect; and 88 percent of women and 89 percent of men felt that GPs spent enough time with them ‘always or often’. Figures
for other practitioners are in Table 2.5.

Gender gap

  • High percentages of women and men had positive perceptions of key aspects of hospital, medical and dental care; however, for many aspects, women’s perceptions were slightly less favourable.
The direction of
change over time
The data used in the Women in NSW 2012 Report showed similarly high percentages of women and men reporting satisfaction with public health care services. Note that this was from a different source and was for NSW public health patients, not the whole population.
Discussion

Most women and men reported positive perceptions of the care provided by other health service professionals as well as GPs, including specialists; dental professionals; hospital doctors and specialists and hospital nurses. See Table 2.5 for figures for other types of health professionals. For over half of the data items shown, women’s ratings were slightly lower than men’s.

The least positive ratings related to the amount of time health professionals spent with patients, with 20 percent of women saying ‘only sometimes or rarely’ did emergency department doctors spend enough time with them. 15 percent of women said ‘only sometimes or rarely’ did hospital doctors spend enough time with them.

The data source for this indicator has changed from last year because NSW Health Patient Survey data is not currently available. In the ABS survey used this year, respondents were asked for their opinion about how they were treated by health professionals they had seen in the previous 12 months. They were asked whether health professionals listened carefully to them; showed respect for them; and spent enough time with them. Data in Table 2.5 shows those who reported the perception ‘always or often’.

Year collected: 2011-12.
Data source: ABS (2013) Patient Experiences in Australia, 2011-12. Cat no. 4839.0, unpublished data for NSW.
More information is available at www.abs.gov.au

Table 2.5 Perceptions of health professional care by sex

Type of health professional 

Women % 

Men % 

General Practitioners 
  Felt that GP listened carefully 

88

90

  Felt that GP treated them with respect 

92

93

  Felt that GP spent enough time with them 

88

89

Medical specialists 
  Felt that specialist listened carefully 

92

92

  Felt that specialist treated them with respect 

92

92

  Felt that specialist spent enough time with them 

89

92

Dental professionals 
  Felt that dentist listened carefully 

94

94

  Felt that dentist treated them with respect 

95

95

  Felt that dentist spent enough time with them 

95

95

Emergency Department doctors and specialists 
  Felt that doctors listened carefully 

87

87

  Felt that doctors treated them with respect 

89

90

  Felt that doctors spent enough time with them 

80

85

Hospital doctors and specialists 
  Felt that doctors listened carefully 

88

92

  Felt that doctors treated them with respect 

91

91

  Felt that doctors spent enough time with them 

85

91

Hospital nurses 
  Felt that nurses listened carefully 

89

94

  Felt that nurses treated them with respect 

89

94

  Felt that nurses spent enough time with them 

85

91

Note: Figures shown are for those who reported ‘always or often’ for the aspect of care.

Population: People 15 years and over.
Source: ABS (2013) Patient Experiences in Australia, 2011-12. Cat no. 4839.0, unpublished data for NSW.