Measuring and assessing patient satisfaction with sexual health services


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Syed, Muslim Abbas ORCID: (2022). Measuring and assessing patient satisfaction with sexual health services. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

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There is a high prevalence of sexual transmitted infections (STIs) within Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) settings particularly among ethnic minorities and marginalized groups which contributes significantly to the overall burden of disease. STIs have direct cost implications and impact on the overall wellbeing of patients, in part due to the strong stigma associated with contracting a STI. The thesis aimed to highlight the various aspects of sexual health services considered most important by patients while accessing care to inform healthcare decision-making for evaluation and planning (designing or re-designing) of services to ensure they are patient centred.

A systematic review, qualitative synthesis and meta-ethnography, and primary research (qualitative) were conducted to establish themes pertaining to various aspects of services considered most important by patients and potential clients. This was further substantiated by generating an evidence-based discussion (based on existing theories in health economics and patient reported outcome measure (PROM) development processes) to justify the need for the development of a preference-based PROM specifically for sexual health services.

Analysis of existing theories in health economics suggested that an Extra-Welfarist approach (expanding the evaluative space within quality adjusted life year (QALY) measurement) as more appropriate for measuring and valuing outcomes in this area. The findings of the systematic review highlighted important structural and methodological limitations in the existing assessment tools whereas the qualitative synthesis and meta-ethnography reported that patients had expectations which were far more than being tested and treated for STIs and receiving advice on contraception. Nine main themes were identified in the primary qualitative research: involvement in decision-making; clear and comprehensive diagnosis and treatment; being seen and getting results quickly; having a choice of appointment type; feeling respected and put at ease; non-judgemental and friendly staff; feeling reassured about confidentiality; having support with partner notification & being able to find & get to services.

The findings of the thesis suggest that a standalone or de-novo sexual health services specific preference-based measure would better allow particular focus on the dimensions which are important to patients, with increased ability to detect meaningful changes in the status of patients

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
Licence: All rights reserved
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Medical & Dental Sciences
School or Department: Institute of Applied Health Research
Funders: Other
Other Funders: Birmingham Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
Subjects: R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine


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