Objective: The objective was to provide a synthesis of the results of the research and discourse lines on main dimensions of patient-centered care in the context of chronic disease management in family medicine, building on Stewart et al.'s model.
Methods: We developed search strategies for the Medline, Embase, and Cochrane databases, from 1980 to April 2009. All articles addressing patient-centered care in the context of chronic disease management in family medicine were included. A thematic analysis was performed using mixed codification, based on Stewart's model of patient-centered care.
Results: Thirty-two articles were included. Six major themes emerged: (1) starting from the patient's situation; (2) legitimizing the illness experience; (3) acknowledging the patient's expertise; (4) offering realistic hope; (5) developing an ongoing partnership; (6) providing advocacy for the patient in the health care system.
Conclusion: The context of chronic disease management brings forward new dimensions of patient-centered care such as legitimizing the illness experience, acknowledging patient expertise, offering hope and providing advocacy.
Practice implications: Chronic disease management calls for the adaptation of the family physician's role to patients' fluctuating needs. Literature also suggests the involvement of the family physician in care transitions as a component of patient-centered care.
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