Physician practice characteristics and satisfaction: A rural-urban comparison of medical directors at U.S. Community and Migrant Health Centers

Leiyu Shi, Michael E. Samuels, Christopher R. Cochran, Saundra Glover, Douglas A. Singh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

For this study, the association between physician practice characteristics and satisfaction of medical directors at rural and urban Community and Migrant Health Centers (C/MHCs) was investigated. Data for this study came from a 1996 cross-sectional survey of C/MHCs' medical directors. A total of 411 centers (68.3 percent) responded to the survey, including 240 rural (67.4 percent) and 171 urban (68.7 percent) C/MHCs. Factor analysis was used to synthesize physician practice characteristics related to overall satisfaction. The resulting factors were entered as new variables in a predictive logistic regression model of overall satisfaction. Growing up in an inner-city community was significantly associated with practicing in an urban center; whereas, growing up in a rural or frontier community was more likely to result in practicing in a rural center. The majority of medical directors (82.3 percent) were either somewhat satisfied or very satisfied with their work. Satisfaction with work was most significantly associated with overall level of satisfaction, followed by satisfaction with administration, peers and patients. Recruitment efforts are more likely to succeed when they target individuals with prior exposure to underserved areas. Improving the working conditions and interactions with administrators would help sustain the high level of satisfaction experienced by medical directors at C/MHCs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)346-356
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Rural Health
Volume14
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1998
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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