Background: Examining the quality of nursing care from the patient's perspective is an important element in quality evaluation. The extent to which patients' expectations are met will influence their perceptions and their satisfaction with the quality of care received.
Methods: A cross- sectional survey was conducted among admitted patients at King Khalid Teaching Hospital, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Data were collected (from January 2011 to March 2011) from a convenience sample of 448 patients using a 42- items questionnaire assessing six dimensions of the nursing care provided to, during hospitalization.
Results: On a four-point scale (4-higly agree,3-agree, 2-disagree, and 1-higly disagree). The individual items of nursing care showing the lowest means were the information received from the nurses about self-help (2.81), the information about the laboratory results (2.76) and the way the nurse shared the patient's feeling (2.72). A strong correlation existed between the overall perception level and the variables of gender (P=0.01), and the types of department (0.004).
Conclusion: The findings of this study demonstrate negative experiences of patients with nursing care in dimensions of information, caring behavior, and nurse competency and technical care. Awareness of the importance of these dimensions of nursing care and ongoing support to investigate patients' perception periodically toward quality of nursing care are critical to success the philosophy of patient centered health care.
Keywords: Nursing care, Quality, Patients perception
Examining the quality of nursing care from the patient's perspective is an important element in quality evaluation, since patients admitted to hospital, has high expectations of the health care system. The extent to which their expectations are met will influence their perceptions and their satisfaction with the quality of care received and, the quality of the specific institution and the health care system as a whole (1, 2).
Over the past 10 years, great emphasis has been placed on patients' health care plans in Saudi Arabia hospitals that can be shared among the health care team. To date there have been no studies conducted to explore and evaluate the patients' perspectives on the quality of care they receive in Saudi hospitals.
Numerous researchers have examined patients' satisfaction with nursing care in general terms as well as patients' perceptions of the quality of nursing care, as two major multidimensional concepts that are used several times interchangeably (3). There seems to be general agreements on what leads to quality care and the literature identifies the following issues. First: identifying what the consumer perceives quality care to be helps create a measure for good service (4, 5). Second: understanding patients' perspectives on the nursing care they receive must precede attempts at measuring their satisfaction with that care (6). Third: As nursing represents a constant presence in the experience of hospitalized patients, their satisfaction with nursing care is the crucial factor in patients' overall satisfaction or dissatisfaction with their hospital experience (7, 8). The fourth: failure of nurses and other health care providers to take into account factors observed and reported by patients as important to their nursing care is inconsistent with the notion of patient-centered care and patient empowerment (3, 8).
In a qualitative descriptive study the findings showed that 597 comments could be grouped into five themes as characteristics of good nursing care, four of them within interpersonal aspects of care, "providing for my needs", "treating me pleasantly", "caring about me", "providing prompt care", and one theme within technical care," being competent" (9).
Moreover, in the kingdom of Bahrain it was reported that the five highest ranked services were" the employees are caring, treat with a warm and caring attitude, the health professionals appeared net, the cleanliness and hygiene at the hospital were excellent, and the equipment and supplies are available. …