The objective of this study is to evaluate the impact of physician attire and behavior on perceptions of care by ICU visitors in Japan.
Materials and methods
Visitors were surveyed including 117 at a community hospital and 106 at a university hospital. Demographic data (age, gender, relationship to patient, length of stay) were collected. A seven-point Likert scale (1=strongly agree, 4=neutral, 7=strongly disagree) was used to judge physician attire (name tag, white coat, scrubs, short sleeve shirts, blue jeans, sneakers, clogs), behavior (addressing a patient, carrying a snack) and overall effect on perception of care.
There are no significant differences (p>0.05) in demographics comparing the two ICUs, except for increased length of stay at the university ICU. Visitors scored the importance of a name tag (median 2, Interquartile Range 1-2), white coat [3,1-4], addressing the patient by last name [2,1-3], wearing scrubs [3,2-4], sneakers [4,3-5], clogs [4,4-5], short sleeves (4,3.5-5), blue jeans [5,4-6], and carrying a snack [6,5-7]. Visitors scored "attire affects perceptions of care" as [3,2-4].
Physician attire in the ICU affects perceptions of care. Implementation of attire guidelines which require clothing that does not meet visitor preferences should be accompanied by education programs.