Sexism Interacts with Patient–Physician Gender Concordance in Influencing Patient Control Preferences: Findings from a Vignette Experimental Design

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Background: Patient preferences regarding their involvement in shared treatments decisions is fundamental in clinical practice. Previous evidences demonstrated a large heterogeneity in these preferences. However, only few studies have analysed the influence of patients’ individual differences, contextual and situational qualities, and their complex interaction in explaining this variability. Methods: We assessed the role of the interaction of patient’s sociodemographic and psychological factors with a physician’s gender. Specifically, we focused on patient gender and attitudes toward male or female physicians. One hundred fifty-three people participated in this randomised controlled study and were randomly assigned to one of two experimental conditions in which they were asked to imagine discussing their treatment with a male and a female doctor. Results: Analyses showed an interplay between attitude towards women and the gender of patients and doctors, explaining interindividual variability in patient preferences. Conclusions: In conclusion, patients’ attitudes toward the physicians’ gender constitutes a relevant characteristic that may influence the degree of control patients want to have and the overall patient-physician relationship.

Original languageEnglish
JournalApplied Psychology: Health and Well-Being
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2020

Keywords

  • control preferences
  • gender differences
  • patient-centered care
  • sexism
  • shared decision making

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology

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