Family member accompaniment to routine medical visits is associated with better self-care in heart failure patients

Crystal W. Cené, Laura Beth Haymore, Feng Chang Lin, Jeffrey Laux, Christine Delong Jones, Jia Rong Wu, Darren Dewalt, Mike Pignone, Giselle Corbie-Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


Objectives: To examine the association between frequency of family member accompaniment to medical visits and heart failure (HF) self-care maintenance and management and to determine whether associations are mediated through satisfaction with provider communication. Methods: Cross-sectional survey of 150 HF patients seen in outpatient clinics. HF self-care maintenance and management were assessed using the Self-Care of Heart Failure Index. Satisfaction with provider communication was assessed using a single question originally included in the American Board of Internal Medicine Patient Satisfaction Questionnaire. Frequency of family member accompaniment to visits was assessed using a single-item question. We performed regression analyses to examine associations between frequency of accompaniment and outcomes. Mediation analysis was conducted using MacKinnon's criteria. Results: Overall, 61% reported accompaniment by family members to some/most/every visit. Accompaniment to some/most/every visit was associated with higher self-care maintenance (β=6.4, SE 2.5; p=0.01) and management (β=12.7, SE 4.9; p=0.01) scores. Satisfaction with provider communication may mediate the association between greater frequency of accompaniment to visits and self-care maintenance (1.092; p=0.06) and self-care management (1.428; p=0.13). Discussion: Accompaniment to medical visits is associated with better HF self-care maintenance and management, and this effect may be mediated through satisfaction with provider communication.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)21-32
Number of pages12
JournalChronic Illness
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 27 2015

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: This work was supported by the National Center for Research Resources [grant number KL2RR025746 (to CC) and UL1RR025747 (to GC-S)]; the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute [grant number K23HL107614 (to CC)]; a salary support provided by Midcareer Investigator Award in Patient-Oriented Research [grant number K24 HL105493 (to GC-S)]; the National Cancer Institute [grant number 5K05CA129166 (to MP)]; the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS), National Institutes of Health, through [grant award number 1UL1TR001111]; and a NIH/HRSA training grant as a NRSA Primary Care Research Fellow [grant number T32HP14001 (to CJ)].


  • Family
  • heart failure
  • patient-provider communication
  • self-care
  • social support

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy


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