Patient centered primary care is associated with patient hypertension medication adherence
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There is increasing evidence that patient centered care, including communication skills, is an essential component to chronic illness care. Our aim was to evaluate patient centered primary care as a determinant of medication adherence. We mailed 1,341 veterans with hypertension the Short Form Primary Care Assessment Survey (PCAS) which measures elements of patient centered primary care. We prospectively collected each patient’s antihypertensive medication adherence for 6 months. Patients were characterized as adherent if they had medication for >80%. 654 surveys were returned (50.7%); and 499 patients with complete data were analyzed. Antihypertensive adherence increased as scores in patient centered care increased [RR 3.18 (95% CI 1.44, 16.23) bootstrap 5000 resamples] for PCAS score of 4.5 (highest quartile) versus 1.5 (lowest quartile). Future research is needed to determine if improving patient centered care, particularly communication skills, could lead to improvements in health related behaviors such as medication adherence and health outcomes.