Open Access Open Badges Research article

Psychometric properties of the Hospital Survey on Patient Safety Culture for hospital management (HSOPS_M)

Antje Hammer1*, Nicole Ernstmann1, Oliver Ommen1, Markus Wirtz2, Tanja Manser3, Yvonne Pfeiffer4 and Holger Pfaff1

Author Affiliations

1 Institute for Medical Sociology, Health Services Research and Rehabilitation Science, Faculty of Human Science and Faculty of Medicine, University of Cologne; Cologne; Germany

2 Institute for Psychology, University of Education Freiburg; Freiburg; Germany

3 University of Fribourg, Department of Psychology; Fribourg; Switzerland

4 ETH Zurich - Center for Organizational and Occupational Sciences; Zurich; Switzerland

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BMC Health Services Research 2011, 11:165  doi:10.1186/1472-6963-11-165

Published: 11 July 2011



From a management perspective, it is necessary to examine how a hospital's top management assess the patient safety culture in their organisation. This study examines whether the Hospital Survey on Patient Safety Culture for hospital management (HSOPS_M) has the same psychometric properties as the HSOPS for hospital employees does.


In 2008, a questionnaire survey including the HSOPS_M was conducted with 1,224 medical directors from German hospitals. When assessing the psychometric properties, we performed a confirmatory factor analysis (CFA). Additionally, we proved construct validity and internal consistency.


A total of 551 medical directors returned the questionnaire. The results of the CFA suggested a satisfactory global data fit. The indices of local fit indicated a good, but not satisfactory convergent validity. Analyses of construct validity indicated that not all safety culture dimensions were readily distinguishable. However, Cronbach's alpha indicated that the dimensions had an acceptable level of reliability.


The analyses of the psychometric properties of the HSOPS_M resulted in reasonably good levels of property values. Although the set of dimensions within the HSOPS_M needs further scale refinement, the questionnaire covers a broad range of sub-dimensions and supplies important information on safety culture. The HSOPS_M, therefore, is eligible to measure safety culture from the hospital management's points of view and could be used in nationwide hospital surveys to make inter-organisational comparisons.