The impact of different modalities for activating patients in a community health center setting

Patient Educ Couns. 2012 Oct;89(1):178-83. doi: 10.1016/j.pec.2012.04.012. Epub 2012 Jun 9.


Objective: Decision aids are designed to assist patients in understanding their health care choices but lower SES populations are less activated and may not be prepared to benefit. Activating interventions may help prepare patients for using decision aids.

Methods: We evaluated the impact of a decision aid video (DA) and the Patient Activation Intervention (PAI) on patient's level of activation measured by the Patient Activation Measure (PAM) and their decision-making confidence measured by the decision self-efficacy (DSE) scale. Patients were randomized into control, PAI alone, DA alone, and DA+PAI groups.

Results: PAM and DSE scores increased significantly in all groups with repeated measures. Restricting analyses to those with pre-intervention PAM scores at stages 1 or 2, the change in PAM scores was significant only for the intervention groups. The change in DSE scores was significantly only in the DA group.

Conclusion: These findings provide support for the utility of the DA, the PAI, and the DA+PAI in activating lower SES individuals. The DA alone changed DSE scores in the least activated patients while the PAI and DA both changed PAM scores.

Practice implications: Interventions directed at increasing patient engagement in their care may be useful particularly for less activated patients from lower SES populations.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Communication*
  • Community Health Centers
  • Decision Making
  • Decision Support Techniques
  • Female
  • Health Behavior
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Patient Education as Topic*
  • Patient Participation / methods*
  • Patient Participation / psychology
  • Physician-Patient Relations*
  • Primary Health Care
  • Program Evaluation
  • Self Care
  • Self Efficacy
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Video Recording
  • Young Adult