FRN Research Brief: Predictors of Treatment Satisfaction

Background

Two measures of overall satisfaction are often presented in the literature: overall satisfaction (how satisfied were you with your overall experience?) and recommendation (would you recommend this program to someone else?). Both are important in determining overall satisfaction and program quality. There is much more limited research looking beyond these global measures, into what effects overall satisfaction.

Our Findings

As part of our ongoing evaluation, satisfaction data collected in 2009-2010 from clients at La Paloma Treatment Center, Michael’s House, and The Canyon was analyzed to identify predictors of the two major measures of treatment satisfaction. Participants completed satisfaction questionnaires consisting of the two global measures and specific measures of thirty-four aspects of satisfaction during the final week of treatment. 1,435 individuals participated in the study.

The two global measures are significantly correlated to each other with a high level of statistical significance, p<.000. Importantly, within the correlated pair, each element accounts for about half (49%) of the variability within the other measure of satisfaction, r(1422)=.49. Suggesting, that both measures are important to consider in determining participants’ experiences. A series of bivariate linear regressions were completed to determine which specific elements within the group of thirty-four predicted overall satisfaction and recommendation, and the degree to which each element accounted for a proportion of the variance in these two measures. All thirty-four elements were statistically significant individually on both measures. “Professionalism of the staff” accounted for the largest proportion of variance for overall satisfaction, R²=.408, F(970)=670.56, p<.000. “Level of respect with which I was treated” accounted for the largest proportion of variance for recommendation, R²=.183, F(970)=217.81, p<.000. Next, a series of multivariate linear regressions were completed to determine if the entire group of thirty-four elements predicted overall satisfaction and recommendation, and the degree to which these element accounted for the variance in these two measures. The set of thirty-four elements were statistically significant predictors on both measures. The variables were significant predictors of overall satisfaction and accounted for nearly two-thirds (64.1%) of the variance for this outcome, R²=.641, F(937)=49.30, p<.000. The thirty-four elements were also significant predictors of recommendation and accounted for over a quarter (25.8%) of variance for this outcome, R²=.258, F(937)=9.57, p<.000. Finally, a series of multivariate step-wise linear regressions were completed to determine which set of predictors within the original set of thirty-four provided the best fitting model for predicting the two outcomes. For overall satisfaction the following thirteen elements provided the best fit: professionalism of the staff, specialty therapy services, quality of program schedule, sessions with individual therapist, level of respect, initial impressions of facility, group therapy, continuing care plans, housing, availability of staff in a crisis, communication among staff, involvement in treatment plans, and meals. For recommending the program to someone else the following eight elements provided the best fit: level of respect with which I was treated, availability of staff in crisis, therapists’ knowledge of dual diagnosis, professionalism of the staff, initial impressions of the facility, respect for cultural or ethnic needs, quality of the program schedule, and communication of changes to the schedule.