The model known as SERVICEQUAL (SQ) examines the correlation between service satisfaction and the gaps that occur between customers’ expectations prior to service and perceptions after being served. The gaps are tested over five dimensions: tangibles of the service, assurance, empathy, reliability, and responsiveness of the service provider. This paper aims to examine the satisfaction of women with childbirth care by exploring correlations between the gaps in the five SQ dimensions and testing the influence of each dimension on the others. Closed-ended questionnaires were used to evaluate satisfaction from SQ dimensions using 1-5 on Likert scale. This study adds to existing literature by offering an insight into the way mothers assess their birthing services by looking at their pre-procedure expectations compared to how they perceive performance post-delivery. The correlations between the gaps in the service’s dimensions were higher after birth than before birth. Significant correlations between the gaps themselves were seen in all five dimensions. The findings suggest that a successful child delivery reduces the mother's anxiety, such that if prior to birth, the five service dimensions exhibit no correlation, then after birth when the mother is less anxious, and her cognitive dissonance is reduced. Stronger correlations form between all five service dimensions. The significant correlations between all five dimensions suggest that receiving empathic treatment from the service provider causes the mother to be pleased with the tangibles, responsiveness, reliability, assurance of the medical staff.
Key words: SERVICEQUAL, mother’s satisfaction, childbirth-care, service perceptions, service expectations.
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