Building Trust

Focusing on trust to improve health care

Building Trust is an ABIM Foundation initiative that promotes trustworthiness between systems and clinicians, clinicians and patients, and the communities they serve, by addressing the primary causes of mistrust and misinformation to improve clinicians’ ability to deliver high-quality care.

Since its launch in 2021, Building Trust has sponsored research, discussions, events, practice challenges and other opportunities with the goal of making trust a core business strategy in order to achieve excellence in the health care system.

Trust is a key element of our mission to advance medical professionalism to improve health care. It lies at the very heart of many commitments of the Physician Charter, such as maintaining trust by managing conflicts of interest, being honest with patients, and preserving patient confidentiality.

Public & Physician Trust in the U.S. Health Care System

In 2021, the ABIM Foundation engaged NORC at the University of Chicago to learn more about public and physician perceptions of trust in the U.S. health system.

The research shows a significant decline in physicians’ trust in health care leaders during the COVID-19 pandemic, notable differences between how physicians and the public perceive trust, and that experiences of discrimination negatively affect trust in U.S. health care.

Learn more about the results in the summary research report. Full toplines are also available from the physician and public survey.

43% of physicians say their trust in government health care agencies decreased during the pandemic.

90% of physicians believe patients can easily schedule appointments, but 24% of patients disagree.

98% of physicians say that spending an appropriate amount of time with patients is important, but only 77% of patients think their doctor spends an appropriate amount of time with them.

78% of people trust their primary doctor.

51% of physicians do not think the health care system discriminates against people.

51% of physicians say they have been discriminated against by their patients.

41% of female patients report discrimination based on gender, compared to 12% of male patients.

77% of Hispanic adults and 76% of Black adults say their physician trusts what they say, compared to 88% of Asian adults and 86% of white adults.