Study: 5 Drivers of Physician Satisfaction

When physicians are able to provide high-quality care to their patients, they are more likely to be satisfied, according to a new RAND Corporation study sponsored by the American Medical Association.

In fact, the ability to provide top-notch care is a primary driver of physician job satisfaction — and when physicians perceived obstacles to providing the best care possible, they were more likely to be dissatisfied.

The following are other key factors contributing to physician satisfaction, according to the study:

Autonomy and work control. When physicians had control over the pace and content of their practice, they were more likely to be satisfied, the study found. To that end, physicians in physician-owned practices were more likely to be satisfied than physicians in a practice owned by a hospital or another corporate entity.

Practice leadership. This factor's influence on physician satisfaction was two-fold. First, physicians were more likely to be satisfied when their values were well-aligned with their leaders' values. Second, when leadership took a balanced approach to new initiatives affecting the entire practice, physicians were more likely to be satisfied.

Collegiality, fairness and respect. When physicians had frequent meetings with colleagues and other health professionals, they were more likely to report being satisfied with their work.

Work content. Generally, physicians were happier when performing at the top of their license instead of doing jobs that could be done by others. Fittingly, then, having quality allied health professionals and support staff were tied to greater physician satisfaction.

Results from the study are based on information from 30 physician practices in six states. Additionally, researchers conducted interviews with 220 physicians, medical administrators and allied health professionals.

More Articles on Physician Satisfaction:
Survey: Physicians Skeptical About Insurance Exchanges
4 Statistics on Physician Satisfaction in Massachusetts
Do PAs, NPs Impact Physician Satisfaction?

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