Applying importance-performance analysis to patient safety culture

Yii Ching Lee, Hsin Hung Wu, Wan Lin Hsieh, Shao Jen Weng, Liang Po Hsieh, Chih Hsuan Huang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose – The Sexton et al.’s (2006) safety attitudes questionnaire (SAQ) has been widely used to assess staff’s attitudes towards patient safety in healthcare organizations. However, to date there have been few studies that discuss the perceptions of patient safety both from hospital staff and upper management. The purpose of this paper is to improve and to develop better strategies regarding patient safety in healthcare organizations. Design/methodology/approach – The Chinese version of SAQ based on the Taiwan Joint Commission on Hospital Accreditation is used to evaluate the perceptions of hospital staff. The current study then lies in applying importance-performance analysis technique to identify the major strengths and weaknesses of the safety culture. Findings – The results show that teamwork climate, safety climate, job satisfaction, stress recognition and working conditions are major strengths and should be maintained in order to provide a better patient safety culture. On the contrary, perceptions of management and hospital handoffs and transitions are important weaknesses and should be improved immediately. Research limitations/implications – The research is restricted in generalizability. The assessment of hospital staff in patient safety culture is physicians and registered nurses. It would be interesting to further evaluate other staff’s (e.g. technicians, pharmacists and others) opinions regarding patient safety culture in the hospital. Originality/value – Few studies have clearly evaluated the perceptions of healthcare organization management regarding patient safety culture. Healthcare managers enable to take more effective actions to improve the level of patient safety by investigating key characteristics (either strengths or weaknesses) that healthcare organizations should focus on.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)826-840
Number of pages15
JournalInternational Journal of Health Care Quality Assurance
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Oct 12

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Business, Management and Accounting(all)
  • Health Policy

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