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Title: Strengths and Gaps in Physicians' Risk Communication: A Scenario Study of the Influence of Numeracy on Cancer Screening Communication.
Authors: Petrova, Dafina
Kostopoulou, Olga
Delaney, Brendan C
Cokely, Edward T
Garcia-Retamero, Rocio
Keywords: cancer screening;numeracy;risk communication
metadata.dc.subject.mesh: Adult
Audiovisual Aids
Decision Making
Early Detection of Cancer
Health Literacy
Linear Models
Middle Aged
Patient Education as Topic
Physician-Patient Relations
Physicians, Family
Surveys and Questionnaires
United Kingdom
Issue Date: 8-Sep-2017
Abstract: Many patients have low numeracy, which impedes their understanding of important information about health (e.g., benefits and harms of screening). We investigated whether physicians adapt their risk communication to accommodate the needs of patients with low numeracy, and how physicians' own numeracy influences their understanding and communication of screening statistics. UK family physicians ( N = 151) read a description of a patient seeking advice on cancer screening. We manipulated the level of numeracy of the patient (low v. high v. unspecified) and measured physicians' risk communication, recommendation to the patient, understanding of screening statistics, and numeracy. Consistent with best practices, family physicians generally preferred to use visual aids rather than numbers when communicating information to a patient with low (v. high) numeracy. A substantial proportion of physicians (44%) offered high quality (i.e., complete and meaningful) risk communication to the patient. This was more often the case for physicians with higher (v. lower) numeracy who were more likely to mention mortality rates, OR=1.43 [1.10, 1.86], and harms from overdiagnosis, OR=1.44 [1.05, 1.98]. Physicians with higher numeracy were also more likely to understand that increased detection or survival rates do not demonstrate screening effectiveness, OR=1.61 [1.26, 2.06]. Most physicians know how to appropriately tailor risk communication for patients with low numeracy (i.e., with visual aids). However, physicians who themselves have low numeracy are likely to misunderstand the risks and unintentionally mislead patients by communicating incomplete information. High-quality risk communication and shared decision making can depend critically on factors that improve the risk literacy of physicians.
metadata.dc.identifier.doi: 10.1177/0272989X17729359
Appears in Collections:Producción 2020

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