African Journal of
Business Management

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Bus. Manage.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1993-8233
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJBM
  • Start Year: 2007
  • Published Articles: 4079

Full Length Research Paper

Delivering quality service to in- and out-patients in a South African public hospital

J. W. de Jager1*, A. T. du Plooy1 and M. Femi Ayadi2        
1Department of Marketing, Logistics and Sport Management, Tshwane University of Technology, South Africa. 2University of Houston, Clear Lake, Houston, TX, USA.
Email: [email protected]

  • Article Number - 18A172621085
  • Vol.4(2), pp. 133-139 , February 2010
  •  Accepted: 04 December 2009
  •  Published: 28 February 2010


The evaluation of public healthcare is important for customers, healthcare providers and society. Understanding the determinants of healthcare satisfaction will lead to improvement of healthcare quality in developing countries. In this study in-patient and out- patients’ expectations, perceptions and satisfaction with the responsiveness provided by a public healthcare provider in South Africa is measured by using an adapted version of SERVQUAL (service quality). The major findings were that all patients demand excellent responsive levels but none of these were met, resulting in dissatisfaction. Overall patients were least satisfied with reasonable waiting time for the dispensing of medication as well as reasonable waiting time for treatment.  The findings of this study could be used to guide public hospitals in general to render healthcare programs that are more patient-centered and to increase their efficiency in a context of scarce resources.


Key words:  Service quality, public healthcare, responsiveness, in- and out-patients.