Citation Information :
Suresan V, Mohanty P, Sen S, Sethi N, Priyadarshinee K. Patients Perception of Dental Students’ Consultation and Relational Empathy (CARE) in an Academic Dental Institution of Bhubaneswar City, India. World J Dent 2022; 13 (6):652-657.
Aim: The aim of this current study was to access the patients’ perception of dental students’ Consultation and relational empathy (CARE) in an Academic Dental Institution in Bhubaneswar City, India.
Materials and methods: This cross-sectional, observational study was conducted among the patients attending an academic dental institution. A pretested, validated, and self-structured questionnaire was designed to assess their demographic information (gender, age, education, occupation, and annual income) and the CARE empathy assessment. The study was conducted over a period of 6 months. The Chi-squared test compared the differences between the patient demographics and CARE empathy scores. A linear regression analysis was used to assess the effects of demographic variables on the CARE empathy scores.
Results: A total of 1,238 subjects participated in this study. The commonest age group was 28–37 years (n = 379, 30.4%). The male participants reported a higher mean empathy score (22.95 ± 5.1, n = 681, 54.6%) as compared to females. Subjects having college and higher educational qualifications reported higher empathy scores (23.38 ± 4.7, n = 509, 40.8%). Housewives had stated the least (CARE score = 21.91 ± 4.6, n = 416, 33.4%). The highest empathy scores were reported among subjects having an income between 5 and 10 lakh rupees per annum (CARE score = 23.26 ± 5.2, n = 85, 6.8%). The responses of the present study were skewed toward the “Good” and “Fair” categories of the CARE measure. A statistically significant correlation was noted for the education variable (p = 0.002) and the annual income (p = 0.012) variables.
Conclusion: The CARE measure questionnaire was proven to be beneficial in recording the empathy scores. Overall reports show that there was fair empathy among the majority of the students as perceived by the patients.
Clinical significance: Patient perceived empathy of the treating dentist plays a critical role in the establishment of interpersonal trust and partnership, willingness to share their concerns, and symptoms, encouraged positive behavioral change, and quick patient recovery.
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