Skip to main content

Physicians' Perceptions of Quality of Care, Professional Autonomy, and Job Satisfaction in Canada, Norway, and the United States

Resource type
Date created
Author: Frank, Erica
BackgroundWe lack national and cross-national studies of physicians’ perceptions of quality of patient care, professional autonomy, and job satisfaction to inform clinicians and policymakers. This study aims to compare such perceptions in Canada, the United States (U.S.), and Norway.MethodsWe analyzed data from large, nationwide, representative samples of physicians in Canada (n = 3,213), the U.S. (n = 6,628), and Norway (n = 657), examining demographics, job satisfaction, and professional autonomy.ResultsAmong U.S. physicians, 79% strongly agreed/agreed they could provide high quality patient care vs. only 46% of Canadian and 59% of Norwegian physicians. U.S. physicians also perceived more clinical autonomy and time with their patients, with differences remaining significant even after controlling for age, gender, and clinical hours. Women reported less adequate time, clinical freedom, and ability to provide high-quality care. Country differences were the strongest predictors for the professional autonomy variables. In all three countries, physicians’ perceptions of quality of care, clinical freedom, and time with patients influenced their overall job satisfaction. Fewer U.S. physicians reported their overall job satisfaction to be at-least-somewhat satisfied than did Norwegian and Canadian physicians.ConclusionsU.S. physicians perceived higher quality of patient care and greater professional autonomy, but somewhat lower job satisfaction than their colleagues in Norway and Canada. Differences in health care system financing and delivery might help explain this difference; Canada and Norway have more publicly-financed, not-for-profit health care delivery systems, vs. a more-privately-financed and profit-driven system in the U.S. None of these three highly-resourced countries, however, seem to have achieved an ideal health care system from the perspective of their physicians.
Published as
BMC Health Services Research 2013, 13:516 doi:10.1186/1472-6963-13-516
Copyright statement
Copyright is held by the author(s).
Scholarly level
Peer reviewed?
Member of collection
Download file Size
1472-6963-13-516.pdf 229.83 KB

Views & downloads - as of June 2023

Views: 0
Downloads: 0