Satisfaction with care: The role of patient-provider racial/ethnic concordance and interpersonal sensitivity

Karon L. Phillips, David A. Chiriboga, Yuri Jang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Objectives: This study examined how patients' satisfaction with their care is affected by racial/ethnic concordance and patients' perceived interpersonal sensitivity of their providers. The sample consisted of non-Hispanic Whites, African Americans/Blacks, Hispanics/Latinos, and Asian Americans age 50 and older. Method: Data came from the population-based Commonwealth Fund 2001 Health Care Quality Survey (n = 2,075). A hierarchical regression model of satisfaction was estimated for each racial/ethnic group with a sequential entry of variables: demographic and health-related variables, racial/ethnic concordance between patient and provider, and interpersonal sensitivity. Results: The influence of patient-provider racial/ethnic concordance on satisfaction with care was negligible, but the influence of interpersonal sensitivity was substantial (p <.001) in all racial/ethnic groups. Discussion: Findings suggest that racial/ethnic concordance may not be universally effective for diverse older populations, but perceived interpersonal sensitivity of the provider has a strong influence on older adults' satisfaction with care regardless of their racial/ethnic background.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1079-1090
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Aging and Health
Issue number7
StatePublished - Oct 2012


  • interpersonal sensitivity
  • patient-provider racial/ethnic concordance
  • satisfaction with care


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