12/11/2009

Most Are 'Satisfied' With Health Care

A report providing results from a survey on public attitudes to health and social care services (HSCS) in Northern Ireland has produced positive findings.

The Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety today published its survey which examines the attitudes of people towards a range of services they had used in the last 12 months.

It also examines public attitudes towards health promotion messages, alternative treatments, the complaints procedure, the importance of washing hands, infections, and willingness to travel further afield for treatment.

Among the key facts and figures is the finding that, overall, 82% of respondents reported they were satisfied (14% were very satisfied; 68% were satisfied; 14% were dissatisfied; 3% were very dissatisfied) with the HSCS in Northern Ireland at present.

The proportion who reported they were satisfied overall is the same as in the 2006 survey.

The proportion of respondents reporting they were satisfied, ranged from 75% for respondents with experience of Community Psychiatric Services, to 93% for respondents using Dental Services, to 98% for respondents using Pharmacy Services, to 100% for respondents using Day Centre Services for older people and disabled people.

A larger proportion of males (85%) than females (80%) were satisfied with the overall service in 2009, the same proportions as in 2006.
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The proportion of respondents that were satisfied ranged across age-groups, increasing from 79% of those aged 50 to 64 years, to 87% of those aged 65 years and over.

In 2006, overall satisfaction ranged from 78% of those aged 45-64 years to 89% of those aged 18-24 years.

The survey is based on a representative sample of adults aged 16 years and over.

The fieldwork was conducted in June 2009 and during this time 1,173 computer assisted face to face interviews were conducted.

Previous surveys were conducted in 2003, 2004, 2005 and 2006 by Social and Market Research on behalf of the Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety

In this survey respondents were asked if they have had any direct experience of using any of a range of health and social care services within the last 12 months.

Direct experience is where the respondent has used the service themselves or where they were directly involved in the service on behalf of a child or relative.

NI Health Minister, Michael McGimpsey, welcomed the figures showing continued high levels of satisfaction among the public, for health and social care services in Northern Ireland.

"The Health and Social Care service is facing major challenges and these findings are a tribute to the hard work and commitment of health and social care staff, who work tirelessly to providing high standards of care.

"Health is the number one priority and I am determined to do everything I can to ensure delivery of the best possible health and social care services for all patients across Northern Ireland," he said.

(BMcC/GK)

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