Patterns and determinants of patient-delivered therapy uptake among healthcare consumers

Sex Transm Dis. 2009 Jan;36(1):25-32. doi: 10.1097/OLQ.0b013e318186011d.


Background: Patient-delivered partner therapy (PDPT) may be an effective alternative to traditional approaches to sexually transmitted infection control and prevention. Consumer PDPT uptake is comprised of two behaviors: (1) patient willingness to deliver medicine (patient-delivery) and (2) partner willingness to take it (partner-use).

Methods: 505 participants aged 18 to 47 completed a nationally distributed survey of intentions, attitudes, perceived norms, perceived control, and specific outcome beliefs, normative influences, and barriers/facilitators related to PDPT. Zero-order correlations and multivariate statistics were used to describe PDPT uptake patterns and determinants.

Results: Consumer uptake exhibited a highly polarized response pattern with the majority willing to participate in patient-delivery (83%) or partner-use (69.4%). Psychosocial determinants of uptake varied by behavior. Regression models of the psychosocial variables (Adj. R>.75) indicate that, across behaviors, PDPT uptake was most closely associated with perceived norm, followed by attitude and perceived control. Specific factors related to uptake include: beliefs that PDPT makes curing disease easier, reduces the spread of the disease, and ensures people are cured; recommendation by healthcare providers; and that the medicine comes with a note from the healthcare provider and is sealed. Several participant characteristics were also significantly correlated with uptake.

Conclusions: Consumers are willing to engage in PDPT and perceive delivery and use differently. Several beliefs and participant characteristics emerged as potentially important factors in willingness to participate. This information can inform the passage of enabling legislation; the selection of PDPT participants; and the development of provider, patient, and partner informational materials.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Delivery of Health Care*
  • Female
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Patient Acceptance of Health Care*
  • Patient Participation*
  • Psychology
  • Sexual Partners*
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases, Bacterial / drug therapy*
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases, Bacterial / prevention & control
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Young Adult