Patients' ability to effectively communicate with their health care providers is an essential aspect of proper self-care, especially for those with chronic conditions. We wanted to develop and validate a brief, reliable measure of patient communication self-efficacy within clinical encounters. Consecutively recruited patients (n=330) with diagnosed hypertension from seven primary care clinics in Chicago, Illinois, Grand Rapids, Michigan, and Shreveport, Louisiana completed an in-person interview including chronic disease self-efficacy, hypertension knowledge, health literacy assessments, and items modified from the Communication and Attitudinal Self-Efficacy (CASE) - Cancer scale. Six items from the CASE were candidates for a new scale due to their focus on the patient-provider relationship. Using principal components analysis with varimax rotation, four items strongly loaded onto one factor (Eigenvalue=2.33; proportion of variance explained=58%) with a Cronbach's α coefficient of 0.75. The measure, referred to as the Ask, Understand, Remember Assesment, (AURA) was moderately correlated with the total score from an existing chronic disease management self-efficacy scale (r=0.31) and disease knowledge (beta coefficient=0.2, 95% Confidence Interval 0.04-0.3, p=.03). Patients with low health literacy had lower scores on the AURA than those with marginal or adequate health literacy (p<.05). The AURA demonstrated high internal consistency and was correlated with both hypertension knowledge and a chronic disease self-efficacy scale. The AURA is brief, valid, has low reading demands, and is an appropriate tool for use among patients with chronic illness. It may also be useful in identifying and assisting patients who are at risk for errors or non-adherence with self-care behaviors.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health(social science)
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
- Library and Information Sciences