Service experiences in hospitals in Bangladesh: are there gender inequities?
Publisher© Emerald Group Publishing Limited
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CitationAndaleeb, S. S., & Millet, I. (2010). Service experiences in hospitals in Bangladesh: are there gender inequities? International Journal of Health Care Quality Assurance, 23(06), 591–606. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/09526861011060951
Purpose – The disparities faced by women, especially in Bangladesh, have a long and contentious history. From education and employment to health care and other social products, the marginalization of women has been stark. This paper aims to examine whether women experience poorer services than men in the hospitals in Bangladesh. Design/methodology/approach – A survey was conducted in both public and private hospitals in Dhaka City, Bangladesh. The sample comprised 305 randomly selected respondents. Using statistical and data mining techniques, the authors test the hypothesis and identify interesting data patterns. Findings – Surprisingly, very few differences were found between the service experiences of male and female patients. While the literature would predict differently, given the disparities that women generally experience, on most service quality attributes female patients were at least as well‐served as male patients. Research limitations/implications – The findings may be unique to the sample from the capital city where hospital users may be more affluent and are provided better service without gender inequity. Practical implications – The findings raise intriguing questions. Among the various possibilities the authors surmise the following: there may be deeper systemic changes underway that are reflected in service providers' attitudes toward women. It is possible that women have lower expectations from the service providers; thus, their ratings are at par with those of men even if they actually received poorer services. Originality/value – This is probably a unique study in that it focuses on gender effects on perceived service quality in a hospital setting in Bangladesh