HSR&D Citation Abstract
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Schopfer DW, Nicosia FM, Ottoboni L, Whooley MA. Patient Perspectives on Declining to Participate in Home-Based Cardiac Rehabilitation: A MIXED-METHODS STUDY. Journal of cardiopulmonary rehabilitation and prevention. 2020 Feb 19.
A minority of eligible patients participate in cardiac rehabilitation (CR) programs. Availability of home-based CR programs improves participation in CR, yet many continue to decline to enroll. We sought to explore among patients the rationale for declining to participate in CR even when a home-based CR program is available.
We conducted a mixed-methods evaluation of reasons for declining to participate in CR. Between August 2015 and August 2017, a total of 630 patients were referred for CR evaluation during index hospitalization (San Francisco VA Medical Center). Three hundred three patients (48%) declined to participate in CR. Of these, 171 completed a 14-item survey and 10 patients also provided qualitative data through semistructured phone interviews.
The most common reason, identified by 61% of patients on the survey, was "I already know what to do for my heart." Interviews helped clarify reasons for nonparticipation and identified system barriers and personal barriers. These interviews further highlighted that declining to participate in CR was often due to competing life priorities, no memory of the initial CR consultation, and inadequate understanding of CR despite referral.
We identified that most patients declining to participate in a home-based CR program did not understand the benefits and rationale for CR. This could be related to the timing of the consultation or presentation method. Many patients also indicated that competing life priorities prevented their participation. Modifications in the consultation process and efforts to accommodate personal barriers may improve participation.