Scottish Patient Experience Survey of GP and Local NHS Services 2011/12 Volume 3: Variation in the Experiences of Primary Care Patients

This report examines the relationship between self-reported experiences of patients and a range of patient, GP practice and regional level characteristics.

3 Detailed Findings - Gender

3.1 The gender profile of the survey respondents is shown in Table 1. For the analysis, we compared the experiences of males to those of females.

Table 1 Gender of respondents

Group Number of respondents Percentage of respondents
Male 60,994 42
Female 84,575 58

3.2 We found that males were slightly more likely than females to report a positive experience.

3.3 Of the 39 questions modelled, gender had an effect on experiences for 30 of them, including all themes (access, referrals, the GP surgery, doctors, nurses, care and treatment, medicines, overall care and out-of-hours) although the effects were weak. For 24 questions males were slightly more likely to report a positive experience and for 6 questions females were slightly more likely to, three of which related to medicines.

3.4 There is some evidence from previous research to show that there is variation in the experiences of hospital inpatients by gender e.g. Scottish Inpatient Patient Experience survey (Scottish Government 2011) and in several English patient experience surveys - inpatient, A/E, outpatient, Primary Care Trusts - in general these surveys found that men reported more favourably than women. However the gender differences are less pronounced and consistent in primary care patient surveys. In a systematic review of 66 studies which explored association between reporting satisfaction with healthcare and socio-demographic variables in both primary and secondary care settings (Crow et al 2002), conflicting results were observed in studies that explored variation by gender and socio-economic status and no firm conclusions could be drawn. In a recent analysis of the English GP practice survey differences between men and women were observed but were fairly weak (Lyratzopoulos et al 2012).

3.5 More generally research has shown that men and women make very different use of primary care, with women making greater use of GP consultation than men, and women more likely to consult if they have an illness (Rogers et al 1999 cited in Campbell et al 2001a).


Email: Gregor Boyd

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