This paper presents the first attempt to provide a national snapshot of patient satisfaction with the Access to Allied Psychological Services (ATAPS) programme in Australia. ATAPS is funded by the Department of Health and Ageing and provides focussed psychological strategies to patients with common mental health disorders. At the time this work was done, ATAPS was managed locally by Divisions of General Practice; it is now managed by Medicare Locals. We emailed the 105 Divisions operating ATAPS inviting them to provide any survey instruments they had used to gauge patient satisfaction data, as well as any available data. Nine Divisions provided surveys and data. The content of the surveys varied considerably. Eight of the nine surveys included a question regarding overall satisfaction with the service and/or the service provider. However, there were few other commonalities between the surveys. In total, 1,142 of the 1,211 respondents who answered the question about overall satisfaction (94.3%) rated it as positive or very positive. Since this study took place, measurement of patient satisfaction has become a national requirement for all Medicare Locals providing ATAPS services. Assessment of patient satisfaction is especially relevant as ATAPS continues to strive to reach vulnerable and hard-to-reach populations. Recommendations are made to assist Medicare Locals, and other systems of primary mental health care provision, in the further collection of patient satisfaction data.
- Patient satisfaction
- Primary mental health care