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Veteran perspectives of epilepsy care: Impact of Veteran satisfaction, knowledge, and proactivity.

Panahi S, Kennedy E, Roghani A, VegaYon G, VanCott A, Gugger JJ, Raquel Lopez M, Jo Pugh M. Veteran perspectives of epilepsy care: Impact of Veteran satisfaction, knowledge, and proactivity. Epilepsy & Behavior : E&B. 2023 Jul 1; 144:109218.

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OBJECTIVE: Veterans are at elevated risk of epilepsy due to higher rates of traumatic brain injury (TBI). However, little work has examined the extent to which quality of care is associated with key outcomes for Veterans with epilepsy (VWE). This study aimed to examine the impact of quality of care on three outcomes: patients'' knowledge of epilepsy self-care, proactive epilepsy self-management, and satisfaction with care. METHOD: We conducted a cross-sectional study of Post-9/11 Veterans with validated active epilepsy who received VA care (n? = 441). Veterans were surveyed on care processes using American Academy of Neurology epilepsy quality measures, and a patient-generated measure related to the use of emergency care. Outcome measures included epilepsy self-care knowledge, proactive epilepsy self-management, and satisfaction with epilepsy care. Covariates included sociodemographic and health status variables and a measure of patient-provider communication. An ordinary least-squares (OLS) regression model was used to determine if the quality of care was associated with the outcomes adjusting for multiple comparisons. RESULTS: Self-reported measures of quality of care were broadly associated with satisfaction with care and epilepsy knowledge. OLS modeling indicated that healthcare provider guidance on when to seek emergency care was significantly associated with higher Veteran satisfaction with care (p? < 0.01). Veterans who were asked about seizure frequency at every visit by their provider also reported higher satisfaction with care (p? < 0.01) and increased epilepsy knowledge (p? < 0.01). Veteran-provider communication was positively associated with epilepsy knowledge and proactive epilepsy self-management. Veterans with epilepsy with drug resistance epilepsy were significantly less satisfied with their care and reported lower proactivity compared to epilepsy controlled with medications. Further analysis indicated Black VWEs reported lower scores on epilepsy self-care knowledge compared to Whites (p? < 0.001). CONCLUSIONS: This study found that quality measures were associated with satisfaction and epilepsy knowledge but not associated with proactive self-management in multivariable models. The finding that better communication between providers and Veterans suggests that in addition to technical quality, interpersonal quality is important for patient outcomes. The secondary analysis identified racial disparities in epilepsy knowledge. This work offers opportunities to improve the quality of epilepsy care through the practice of patient-centered care models that reflect Veteran priorities and perceptions.

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