Publication Date



patient experience, coordinated care, psychometrics, specialty care, survey methods


Purpose: Specialty care coordination relies on information flowing bidirectionally between all three participants in the “specialty care triad” — patients, primary care providers (PCPs), and specialists. Measures of coordination should strive to account for the perspectives of each. As we previously developed two surveys to measure coordination of specialty care as experienced by PCPs and specialists, this study aimed to develop and evaluate the psychometric properties of a related survey of specialty care coordination as experienced by the patient, thereby completing the suite of surveys among the triad.

Methods: We developed a draft survey based on literature review, patient interviews, adaptation of existing measures, and development of new items. Survey responses were collected via mail and online in two waves, August 2019–November 2019 and September 2020–May 2021, among patients (N = 939) receiving medical specialty care and primary care in the Veterans Affairs health system. Exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis were used to assess scale structure. Multiple linear regression was used to examine the relationship of the final coordination scales to patients’ overall experience of specialty care coordination.

Results: A 38-item measure representing 10 factors that assess the patient’s experience of coordination in specialty care among the patient, PCP, and specialist was finalized. Scales demonstrated good internal consistency reliability and, together, explained 59% of the variance in overall coordination. Analyses revealed an unexpected construct describing organization of care between patient and specialist that accounted for patient goals and preferences; this 10-item scale was named Patient-Centered Care Coordination.

Conclusions: The final survey, Coordination of Specialty Care – Patient, or CSC-Patient for short, is a reliable instrument that can be used alone or with its companions (CSC-PCP, CSC-Specialist) to provide a detailed assessment of specialty care coordination and identify targets for coordination improvement.

Supplemental Table S1.pdf (132 kB)
Online Supplemental Table S1

Appendix A.pdf (142 kB)
Online Appendix A




December 6th, 2022


May 3rd, 2023


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