A systematic review of the research on communication between patients and health care professionals about medicines: the consequences for concordance
Version of Record online: 20 AUG 2004
Volume 7, Issue 3, pages 235–245, September 2004
How to Cite
Stevenson, F. A., Cox, K., Britten, N. and Dundar, Y. (2004), A systematic review of the research on communication between patients and health care professionals about medicines: the consequences for concordance. Health Expectations, 7: 235–245. doi: 10.1111/j.1369-7625.2004.00281.x
- Issue online: 20 AUG 2004
- Version of Record online: 20 AUG 2004
- Accepted for publication 15 April 2004
- health care professional– patient interaction;
- systematic review
Objectives We draw on a systematic review of research on two-way communication between patients and health practitioners about medicines in order to determine the extent to which concordance is, or is not, being put into practice.
Data sources Six electronic databases were searched using the following categories of search terms: health care professionals, patients/consumers, medicine-taking/prescribing and communication. Articles were also identified from handsearches of journals, article reference lists and the Concordance website.
Review methods Studies published between 1991 and 2000 were included. Studies were not excluded on the basis of design, methods or language employed. Abstracts of identified articles were assessed by at least two reviewers and the full articles were assessed by one reviewer and checked by at least one other reviewer. Data on the design, analysis and relevant findings were extracted.
Results A total of 11 801 abstracts were reviewed and 470 full articles were retrieved. Of the 134 articles subsequently included, 116 were descriptive studies. All but 10 of the papers were written in English. There were mixed findings about the extent to which patients feel that their beliefs, experience and preferences about medicines can be shared. Doctors tend to dominate discussions in consultations, although patient participation is associated with positive outcomes. Health care professionals’ behaviour can impede as well as enhance patient involvement.
Conclusions There is little research that examines fundamental issues for concordance such as whether an exchange of views takes place. It is possible that interventions are needed to facilitate the development of concordance in practice.