Do patients’ demographic characteristics affect their perceptions of self-care actions to find safe and decent care?

Huey Ming Tzeng, Udoka Okpalauwaekwe, Chang Yi Yin, Sandra Lynn Jansen, Cindy Feng, Anne Barker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Aim(s): This exploratory study examined the relationship of five patient demographic characteristics (residence in an urban or rural site, gender, age group, marital status, and education level) with the patients’ (1) perceived importance of, (2) desire to, (3) ability to perform four patient engagement self-care actions that result in finding safe and decent care. Background: Equitable access to health care is essential in a humanized health care system. Healthcare providers must engage patients in discussions about their desires for their care to create person-centered care plans reflecting patient values and wishes. Methods: This secondary data analysis from a cross-sectional survey project surveyed community-dwelling adults living in the southern United States, 2015–2016. This paper only includes responses of participants aged 65 years and older (N = 123). Data collected in The Patient Action Inventory for Self-Care and demographic questions were used. Chi-square tests and multiple logistic regression analyses were used. Results: As revealed in the Chi-square and logistic regression findings, self-care actions of “finding a doctor or practitioner who meets your needs,” “using available information to choose a doctor or practitioner,” and “using data to choose a hospital or clinic” showed some associations with whether seniors resided in an urban or rural community, age group, and marital status (P < 0.05). No significant associations between these four self-care actions with gender or education were found. Conclusions: A community-based solution is warranted to leverage between patient demographic characteristics and their perceived self-care actions by harnessing local factors in collaboration with identified patient needs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)24-29
Number of pages6
JournalApplied Nursing Research
StatePublished - Oct 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Patient engagement
  • Patient involvement
  • Patient participation
  • Self-care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Nursing


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