Relations between physicians’ behaviors and analogue patients’ satisfaction, recall, and impressions

Debra L. Roter, Judith A. Hall, Nancy R. Katz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

302 Scopus citations


This paper investigates associations between physicians’ task-oriented and socioemotional behaviors, on the one hand, and analogue patients’ satisfaction, recall of information, and global impressions. The study is based on role-playing subjects’ responses to interactions between physicians and simulated patients. Audiotapes of two standardized patient cases presented by trained patient simulators to 43 primary care physicians were rated by role-playing patients (N = 258), and electronically filtered excerpts from the encounters were rated for vocal affect by 37 independent judges. Content analysis was made of the visits’ transcripts to assess interaction process and to identify all medical information communicated. Finally, speech error rate was calculated from a combination of audiotape and transcript. Findings revealed that role-playing patients clearly distinguished task from socioemotional behaviors of the physicians, and a consistent pattern of association emerged between physicians’ task behaviors and role-playing patients’ satisfaction, recall, and impressions. Within the task domain, patient-centered skills (i.e., giving information and counseling) were consistently related to patient effects in a positive direction, but physician-centered behaviors (i.e., giving directions and asking questions) demonstrated the opposite relationship. A negative pattern of association was also evident between physicians’ socioemotional behaviors and patient effects.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)437-451
Number of pages15
JournalMedical care
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1987


  • Analogue study
  • Patient recall
  • Patient satisfaction
  • Physician performance
  • Physician socioemotional behavior
  • Physician task behavior
  • Physician-patient communication
  • Simulated patients

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


Dive into the research topics of 'Relations between physicians’ behaviors and analogue patients’ satisfaction, recall, and impressions'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this