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Invited Commentary
February 15, 2017

Association of Unsolicited Patient Observations With the Quality of a Surgeon’s Care

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts
  • 2Stanford Law School, Stanford, California
  • 3Department of Health Research and Policy, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, California
  • 4Center for Health Policy, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, California
  • 5Center for Primary Care and Outcomes Research, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, California
JAMA Surg. Published online February 15, 2017. doi:10.1001/jamasurg.2016.5705

Dr Gregory House and Dr Peter Benton, of the popular television dramas House and ER, respectively, are gruff and sometimes arrogant and misanthropic characters. Part of what attracts viewers to these characters is the intriguing divide between their poor interpersonal skills and their technical brilliance and superb patient outcomes. A degree of divergence between subjective and objective measures of physician quality has long been recognized.1,2 However, recent studies have refocused attention on the potential associations between patient satisfaction and clinical outcomes.3,4

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