This study aims to identify the patient-physician communication barriers in the primary healthcare setting in Pulau Penang, Malaysia. A cross-sectional study was designed to attain the objectives of the study. A self-developed 17-item study tool was used to explore respondent's perception about the barriers they have faced while communicating with physician. The reliability scale was applied and internal consistency of the study tool was estimated on the basis of Cronbach's alpha (α = 0.58). The data analysis was conducted using statistical package for social sciences students SPSS 13® . Chi Square test was used to test the difference between proportions. A total of n = 69 patients responded to this survey. A higher participation was seen by the male respondents, 39 (56.5%). About 52 (76.5%) of the respondents were satisfied with the information provided by the physician. In an effort to identify the patient-physician barriers, a poor understanding among the patients and physician was revealed. 16 (23.5%) respondents disclosed lack of satisfaction from the information provided to them. Overall, it is seen that lack of physician-patient understanding was the main reason that result hindrance in the affective communication. Moreover, there is a possibility that a low level of health literacy among the patients and inability of the physician to affectively listen to patients may be the other factors that result in a deficient communication.
Keywords: Barriers, Malaysia, patient-physician communication.