Volume 54 | Number 3 | June 2019

Abstract List

Dagmara Paiva MD, PhD, Liliana Abreu PhD, Ana Azevedo MD, PhD, Susana Silva PhD


To explore the perceptions of the constraining and facilitating factors to patient‐centered communication in clinical encounters of patients with type 2 diabetes and the providers involved in their care.

Data Sources/Study Setting

Patients (n = 12) and providers (n = 33) involved in diabetes care in northern Portugal.

Study Design

Seven focus groups.

Data Collection/Extraction Methods

Grounded theory, using open, axial, and selective coding.

Principal Findings

Patients focused on the patient‐provider relationship, while providers emphasized the constraining factors when exchanging information and the facilitating factors regarding disease and treatment‐related behavior. Patients and providers both agreed on some constraints (power imbalance, avoidance of criticism, disease minimization, use of jargon, and insufficient competencies and consistency among providers) and facilitators (seeing patients as persons, providing tailored information in plain language, and recognizing the “wake‐up call”). Patients perceived an aggressive attitude as a barrier to communication, but providers perceived it as a facilitator. Patients included issues related to trust, respect, and psychosocial support as important factors to them. Only providers mentioned the influence of macro‐level interventions and patients’ socioeconomic position as essential factors.


Improvements in patient‐centered communication depend on fostering the patient‐provider relationship, patients’ participation and involvement, and training providers’ communication skills.