Why and how service quality perceptions impact consumer responses

Michael Etgar, Galia Fuchs

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Purpose: This study aims to explore the relationship between the perceived quality of services provided by specialist physicians and patients' attitudinal responses along cognitive, emotive and conative levels. Design/methodology/approach: The SERVQUAL model was used to evaluate the quality of the medical services. The data were collected in a survey of medium-level executives enrolled in professional MBA and executive BA programs in Israel. Findings: The study shows that patients' evaluations regarding service quality do affect significantly their attitudinal responses. It has also found out that service dimensions relating to anxiety reduction and the desires to reduce perceived risk, namely the Assurance and the Reliability dimensions are the most important for patients in these kinds of service encounters. Practical implications: The study should encourage service managers of health care-providing organizations to use these results to ensure higher patient satisfaction. These results indicate that, in these kinds of medical service encounters, physicians should explicitly recognize the role of service quality perceptions for anxiety reduction and incorporate as many anxiety-reducing cues as possible in the environment of such interactions. Originality/value: The research reinforces the importance of patients' perceptions of service quality in medical encounters. The study shows that such perceptions are relevant for patients in medical service encounters of the intermediate type where such patients are treated by specialist physicians. It shows that such perceptions affect the levels of patients' satisfaction from such encounters at both the cognitive and affective levels. They also affect their intentions to act following such encounters in the short, intermediate and long time spans.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)474-485
Number of pages12
JournalManaging Service Quality
Issue number4
StatePublished - 10 Jul 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Customer satisfaction
  • Customer services quality
  • Health services
  • Patients

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Strategy and Management


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