Follow-up care delivery in community-based hypertension and type 2 diabetes management: a multi-centre, survey study among rural primary care physicians in China

Yi Wang, Xiu-Jing Hu, Harry Wang, Hong-Yan Duan, Ying Chen, Yu-Ting Li, Zi-Lin Luo, Xin Li, Jia-Ji Wang, Stewart W Mercer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Background: Follow-up care is crucial but challenging for disease management particularly in rural areas with limited healthcare resources and clinical capacity, yet few studies have been conducted from the perspective of rural primary care physicians (PCPs). We assessed the frequency of follow-up care delivered by rural PCPs for hypertension and type 2 diabetes – the two most common long-term conditions.

Methods: We conducted a multi-centre, self-administered survey study built upon existing general practice course programmes for rural PCPs in four provinces. Information on follow-up care delivery were collected from rural PCPs attending centralised in-class teaching sessions using a set of close-ended, multiple choice questions. Binary logistic regression analysis was performed to examine physician-level factors associated with non-attainment of the target frequency of follow-up care for hypertension and type 2 diabetes, respectively. The final sample consisted of rural PCPs from 52 township-level regions. The Complex Samples module was used in the statistical analysis to account for the multistage sample design.

Results: The overall response rate was 91.4%. Around one fifth of PCPs in rural practices did not achieve the target frequency of follow-up care delivery (18.7% for hypertension; 21.6% for type 2 diabetes). Higher education level of physicians, increased volume of daily patients seen, and no provision of home visits were risk factors for non-attainment of the target frequency of follow-up care for both conditions. Moreover, village physicians with less working experiences tended to have less frequent follow-up care delivery in type 2 diabetes management.

Conclusions: Efforts that are solely devoted to enhancing rural physicians’ education may not directly translate into strong motivation and active commitment to service provision given the possible existence of clinical inertia and workload-related factors. Risk factors identified for target non-attainment in the follow-up care delivery may provide areas for capacity building programmes in rural primary care practice. (300 words)

Key words: follow-up care delivery; hypertension; type 2 diabetes; treatment goal; target non-attainment; rural area; primary care physicians
Original languageEnglish
Article number224 (2021)
JournalBMC Family Practice
Volume22
Issue number224 (2021)
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 13 Nov 2021

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Follow-up care delivery in community-based hypertension and type 2 diabetes management: a multi-centre, survey study among rural primary care physicians in China'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this