The following article is part of The Clinical Advisor’s coverage from the 2018 American Academy of Physician Assistants’ annual meeting in New Orleans. Our staff will be reporting live on original research, case studies, and professional outreach and advocacy news from leading PAs in many specialty areas. Check back for ongoing updates from AAPA 2018. 

NEW ORLEANS — Patients with type 2 diabetes (T2DM) adhere better to self-management behaviors and may experience greater treatment satisfaction if they have increased collaboration and shared decision making with an advanced care provider, according to research presented at the American Academy of Physician Assistants’ (AAPA) 2018 conference.

Yolanda Freeman-Hildreth, PA-C, from the College of Health Professions at the University of Detroit Mercy, and colleagues, conducted a quantitative study to determine which provider attributes influence patients with T2DM to adhere to treatment plans and have successful outcomes. A total of 474 patients with T2DM were administered a 62-question online survey using 2 different platforms: Facebook, Amazon Mechanical Turk, and a Qualtrics panel. After data screening, 423 patients were included.

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Results from the survey indicate that perceived provider compassion (β=.41) and optimism (β=.48,) positively affect coping ability. Coping ability positively affects self-management (β=.38), and treatment satisfaction (β=.55). Full mediation effects were found, with coping ability positively mediating the effect of compassion (β=.08) on self-management along with optimism (β=.09) on self-management. Furthermore, full mediation effects were found, with coping ability positively mediating the effect of compassion (β=.13) on treatment satisfaction along with optimism (β=.16) on treatment satisfaction. Age negatively affected self-management (β= -.15).

“This study has implications for improving patient–provider communication,” the authors concluded. Providers can influence their patients’ ability to cope by communicating with optimism and hope while delivering realistic expectations to their patients with compassion.”

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Freeman-Hildreth Y, Aron D, Cola P, Wang Y. Provider attributes that influence diabetes adherence. Presented at the American Academy of Physician Assistants 2018 conference; May 19-23, 2018; New Orleans. Poster 277.