The Association of Perceived Provider-Patient Communication and Relationship Quality With Colorectal Cancer Screening

Meghan L. Underhill, Marc T. Kiviniemi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Scopus citations


Background. Two-thirds of adults aged 50 years and older are adherent to recommendations for colorectal cancer screening. Provider-patient communication and characteristics of the patient-provider relationship may relate to screening behavior. Methods. The association of provider communication quality, relationship, and colorectal cancer screening was examined within data from the 2007 Health Information National Trends Survey. Results. Perceived provider communication and relationship quality were associated with both adherence to colonoscopy and with ever having been screened. Predictive margins analyses indicated that increasing perceptions from lowest to highest levels of communication and relationship quality would be associated with increases in screening rates approaching 16 percentage points. Conclusion. Improving provider-patient communication and relationship quality could potentially improve colorectal cancer screening behaviors among adults aged 50 years and older. Future research and clinical practice should focus on understanding the role of these factors in screening behavior and enhance the provider-patient interaction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)555-563
Number of pages9
JournalHealth Education and Behavior
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 2012

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Data analysis and preparation of this article were supported by NIH Grant K07CA106225 to Marc T. Kiviniemi. The sponsor had no involvement in the research or preparation of the article.


  • cancer prevention and screening
  • health communications
  • health promotion
  • patient education
  • quantitative methods

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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