Objectives: Primary care is the key element of health reform in China. The objective of this study was to compare patient assessed quality of public primary care between Hong Kong, a city with established primary care environment influenced by its colonial history, and Shanghai, a city leading primary care reform in Mainland China; and to measure the equity of care in the two cities. Methods: Cross sectional stratified random sampling surveys were conducted in 2011. Data were collected from 1,994 respondents in Hong Kong and 811 respondents in Shanghai. A validated Chinese version of the primary care assessment tool was employed to assess perceived quality of primary care with respect to socioeconomic characteristics and health status. Results: We analyzed 391 and 725 respondents in Hong Kong and Shanghai, respectively, who were regular public primary care users. Respondents in Hong Kong reported significant lower scores in first contact accessibility (1.59 vs. 2.15), continuity of care (2.33 vs. 3.10), coordination of information (2.84 vs. 3.64), comprehensiveness service availability (2.43 vs. 3.31), comprehensiveness service provided (2.11 vs. 2.40), and the total score (23.40 vs. 27.40), but higher scores in first contact utilization (3.15 vs. 2.54) and coordination of services (2.67 vs. 2.40) when compared with those in Shanghai. Respondents with higher income reported a significantly higher total primary care score in Hong Kong, but not in Shanghai. Conclusions: Respondents in Shanghai reported better quality of public primary care than those in Hong Kong, while quality of public primary care tended to be more equitable in Shanghai.
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