Abstract

Introduction: Quality is the center of attention in all service providing organizations that are effective in promoting satisfaction of patients who are referred to medical centers. The aim of this study was to investigate the quality of health service providers in a case study of Qazvin, Iran, in 2014. 

Methods: This descriptive study was conducted on 1,002 people who were residents of Qazvin Province (Iran) in 2014. The people were selected randomly from the population of the study area. The main variables studied were education, perceptions, expectations, and gaps in service quality. The data collection tool was the standard Servequal questionnaire. To determine the reliability of the research tool, we used Cronbach’s Alpha coefficient and the test-retest method. Statistical analyses were conducted using SPSS and the ANOVA test. 

Results: The mean age of people included in the study was 32 ± 9.9 years, and the average waiting time to receive services was 73 ± 47 minutes. Hospitals and doctors' offices had the highest quality gap of -1.420 ± 0.82 and -1.01 ± 0.75, respectively. The service quality gaps in medical centers, health providers of rural area, and health providers of urban area were -0.883 ± 0.67, -0.882 ± 0.83, and -0.804 ± 0.62, respectively. There was a significant relationship between peoples' perceptions and expectations concerning the quality of health services and their educational levels. 

Conclusion: The higher gaps in quality in hospitals and in doctors' offices require more attention. Managers and policy makers should consider developing and implementing plans to reduce these gaps in quality and to promote better health services in these two sectors.

 

Keywords: quality of services; service providing centers; health system
 
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