Selected papers from the 27th Annual Meeting of the Council on Resident Education in Obstetrics and Gynecology/Association of Professors of Gynecology and Obstetric Meeting paper| Volume 197, ISSUE 5, P548.e1-548.e7, November 01, 2007

Patient choice: comparing criteria for selecting an obstetrician-gynecologist based on image, gender, and professional attributes


      The purpose of this study was to compare gender, humanistic qualities or technical competence (HQTC), and age when an obstetrician-gynecologist is selected.

      Study Design

      Participants saw photographs (2 women, 2 men) without descriptors then the same photographs with descriptors. To test whether HQTC were more important than gender, the men in the photographs were given HQTC descriptors. Female patients, visitors, and staff at Hartford Hospital along with community and outpatient sites were recruited. Demographic information was collected.


      From 901 participants, 83% chose a woman, 59% of whom selected gender or age as the reason. Single and younger patients were more likely to choose female and younger providers, respectively. With descriptors, 62% of the women chose a male provider. A significant number chose a different gender provider (P < .001) and made their selection for a different reason (P < .001).


      More women chose a female provider when no additional information is known. A significant number changed their selection when male providers were described with HQTC.

      Key words

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