The relationship between patient-provider communication and quality of life for children with asthma and their caregivers

Delesha M. Carpenter, Guadalupe X. Ayala, Dennis M. Williams, Karin B. Yeatts, Stephanie Davis, Betsy Sleath

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

19 Scopus citations


Objective: This study examined whether patient-provider communication is associated with asthma-related quality of life (QOL) and asthma outcomes among children with asthma and their caregivers. Methods: Children ages 8-16 years with asthma and their caregivers (n=296) were recruited at five pediatric practices in North Carolina. Children and caregivers reported demographic and clinical characteristics immediately after an audio-taped medical visit with their health care provider. During a home visit that took place 1 month after the medical visit, children and caregivers reported asthma-related QOL, and caregivers reported child asthma outcomes, including asthma symptom days and missed school days. Generalized estimating equations were used to determine whether patient-provider communication during the medical visit was associated with child and caregiver QOL and child asthma outcomes 1 month later. Results: On average, providers asked caregivers 4.5 questions and asked children 3 questions per visit, whereas caregivers and children asked less than 1 question per visit. Providers asked children more asthma-related questions, caregivers reported better QOL and fewer asthma symptom days 1 month later. Children and caregivers with higher asthma-management self-efficacy at the office visit reported better QOL 1 month later. Conclusions: Mirroring national guideline recommendations, our results suggest that providers should ask children about their asthma during medical visits. Future longitudinal studies should conduct mediation analyses to determine whether asking children asthma-related questions during medical visits increases children's asthma management self-efficacy and ultimately improve outcomes, such as QOL, health care utilization, symptom days and missed school days.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)791-798
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Asthma
Issue number7
StatePublished - Sep 2013


  • Adolescents
  • Caregiver-provider communication
  • Child-provider communication
  • Health care utilization
  • Missed school days
  • Self-efficacy
  • Symptom days

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Medicine(all)

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