Role expectations from doctors and effects on nonmedical outcomes
Kasnakoğlu, Berna Tarı
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Rationale, aims, and objectives The predominant assumption of doctor professionalism may be prone to unpredicted alterations in the face of "a new age of doctoring." The aim in this study is to explore one dimension in the doctor-patient dyadic relationship: the face-to-face interaction between doctors and patients and whether satisfaction of role expectations affects service outcomes as perceived by the patient-consumer. Methods In the first qualitative phase, 10 physicians and 11 patients were interviewed in-depth for the purposes of understanding the variations in role expectations from doctors. These details were then used to construct the scenarios to be used in the second quantitative phase. Scenario-based experimental data were collected using a cross-sectional sample consisting of 432 individuals. Results Although positive emotions lead to positive outcomes when the doctor is role-congruent, positive emotions lead to even better outcomes when the doctor is behaving too friendly. In addition, negative emotions lead to negative outcomes in both scenarios; however, outcomes become worse when the doctor is role-incongruent. Conclusions Role expectations play a moderating role between emotions and service outcomes. The medical performance can be perceived good or bad depending on whether the doctor smiles "too much" or not. Results are discussed within the context of role expectation theory and the changing nature of service relationships in the health care sector.