Sub-optimal patient and physician communication in primary care consultations: its relation to severe and difficult asthma

Mandy Moffat*, Jennifer Cleland, Thys van der Molen, David Price

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Introduction: Asthma control can be influenced by a range of non-medical issues, including psychosocial factors. Little is known about the views of patients, particularly those with severe and/or difficult asthma, towards their asthma control and their asthma-related primary care consultations. Aims and objectives: To explore patients' experiences of their asthma and primary care asthma consultations in order to identify target areas for intervention. Methods: This was a qualitative study of 14 asthma patients based in grounded theory. Questions were asked about: asthma understanding; control issues; and interactions with primary care health professionals. Data were analysed using the constant comparative method and framework approach. Results: Participants with severe and/or difficult asthma normalised control issues, were reluctant to discuss non-medical factors with healthcare professionals (HCPs), reported poorer communication with HCPs, and were reluctant to raise relevant but non-medical factors in the consultation. Conclusions: Our data identifies that patients, particularly those with severe and/or difficult asthma and poor control, underplay symptoms and do not discuss non-medical factors which may impact on asthma control in primary care consultations. This poor communication is associated with patients underestimating disease severity and/or what could be achieved in terms of disease control. Training HCPs in the use of patient-centred communication skills may optimise asthma management in primary care.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)159-165
Number of pages7
JournalPrimary Care Respiratory Journal
Volume15
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2006

Keywords

  • Asthma
  • Patient experiences
  • Professional-patient communication
  • Qualitative study
  • Symptom control

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