Communication Between Low Income Hispanic Patients and Their Healthcare Providers Regarding Physical Activity and Healthy Eating
U.S. Hispanics disproportionately show health burdens that may be decreased by discussing physical activity (PA) and healthy eating with their healthcare providers (HCPs). We examined the perceptions of both HCPs and low-income Hispanic patients regarding the dynamics of these communications. We surveyed 295 low-income Hispanic patients and interviewed 14 HCPs at three community health clinics. Patients were asked about their comfort level with HCPs, how often their HCP discussed PA and healthy eating, and the likelihood of following advice on PA and healthy eating. HCPs were asked about their delivery (frequency/duration) and perceived effectiveness in providing such advice. Patients reported feeling “most comfortable” with their physicians (57%) with a lower proportion (19%) feeling “most comfortable” with nurses. Nearly all patients (95%) reported being very likely to follow the advice of their physician. On average, HCPs (physicians and nurses) reported discussing PA and healthy eating with 85% and 80% of their patients, respectively. In contrast, a fewer proportion of patients (65.8%) reported that their physician discussed PA and healthy eating “some” or “a lot” of the time. Overall, physicians reported discussing PA and healthy eating for an average of 5 and 6 min, respectively; whereas nurses reported discussing PA and healthy eating for an average of 12 and 19 min, respectively. Further study on the content and delivery of conversations between HCPs and their low-income Hispanic patients regarding PA and healthy eating could be vital to optimally impact health behaviors.
KeywordsHealthcare providers Healthy eating Hispanics Low-income Physical activity
Community health clinics
Health care providers
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that there are no conflicts of interest.
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