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Open Access Research article

Is the patient satisfaction questionnaire an acceptable tool for use in a hospice inpatient setting? A pilot study

Kate ME Henriksen1*, Naomi Heller2, Anne M Finucane1 and David Oxenham1

Author Affiliations

1 Marie Curie Hospice Edinburgh, Frogston Road West, Edinburgh EH10 7DR, UK

2 College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine, University of Edinburgh, 49 Little France Crescent, Edinburgh EH16 4SB, UK

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BMC Palliative Care 2014, 13:27  doi:10.1186/1472-684X-13-27

Published: 2 June 2014



The Patient Satisfaction Questionnaire (PSQ) is an assessment tool used to evaluate patients’ perspectives of their doctor’s communication and interpersonal skills. The present pilot study investigated whether the PSQ could be administered successfully in a hospice inpatient setting and if it is an acceptable tool for completion by patients and relatives in this context.


The study was conducted in two phases. A first phase was undertaken to establish the process of PSQ administration in a hospice inpatient ward. A second phase of questionnaire administration followed by semi-structured interviews explored inpatient experiences of the questionnaire process.


Overall, 30 inpatients and one relative were invited to complete the PSQ across both phases of data collection, representing 53% of all inpatients at the time of data collection. The remaining 47% were deemed unsuitable to ask due to a diagnosis of dying (24%), confusion (17%), distress (3%) or lack of availability (2%). The average response rate across both phases of data collection was 87%. Qualitative interview data suggested that the PSQ was considered clear, easy to understand and not burdensome in terms of time or effort for this population.


The PSQ appears an acceptable tool to use in a hospice inpatient setting. Many patients welcomed the opportunity to be involved and give feedback. Using a greater proportion of relatives as an alternative source of feedback could be considered in future studies.

Patient satisfaction questionnaire; Hospice; Specialist palliative care; Revalidation; Multisource 360° feedback