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J Am Acad Nurse Pract. 2012 Jan;24(1):43-51. doi: 10.1111/j.1745-7599.2011.00660.x. Epub 2011 Aug 5.

Behavior changes in patients with diabetes and hypertension after experiencing shared medical appointments.

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School of Nursing, George Mason University, Manassas, Virginia, USA.



This project examined recently implemented shared medical appointments (SMAs) at a free clinic for patients with diabetes and/or hypertension. Changes in patients' self-managing behaviors, specifically exercise and goal-setting activity, were explored after participating in SMAs for 4 months.


The study employed a pretest-posttest quasi-experimental design. Participants completed a questionnaire of their self-managing behaviors and a behavioral action plan at each SMA. The SMAs were facilitated in English, Spanish, and bilingually (English and Spanish) with a total of 37 participants.


Descriptive analysis showed a significant increase in exercise time with a mean increase of 86 min per week at post-SMA (p= .002, 95% confidence interval [CI]). Each participant identified a measurable goal, and 97% of participants reported achieving or almost achieving their goals. Males reported a significantly (p= .002, 95% CI) larger increase in exercise time than women. Variance of self-managing behaviors among the English, Spanish, and bilingual SMAs was statistically not significant.


Though much evidence exists demonstrating that SMAs provide effective quality care, literature is lacking in examining patients' self-managing behaviors after participation in language-specific SMAs. Understanding patients' response to programs that address the needs of the individual leads to more effective programs.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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