To the Editor: The article by Dr Braddock and
colleagues1 has been useful in our new course
on health communication, especially the table listing the 7 elements of informed
decision making. From a statistical standpoint, however, we are concerned
that the unit of analysis was the individual clinical decision. The analysis
used t tests, χ2 tests, and Fisher
exact tests, all of which require independent observations. Individual physicians
and patients all have past experiences, personalities, and dispositions that
result in preferences for certain styles of communication. For example, a
physician who has developed a heightened awareness of the importance of good
communication may practice more complete, informed decision making with all
patients. The physician may therefore be a more appropriate unit of analysis
than the individual clinical decision.2
On the other hand, patients who take a more active role in the encounter probably
elicit more complete information from the physician. When studying the complex
process of communication3 within this type
of sample, it is important to control for the individual patient and physician
when testing for differences in various communication elements in the clinical
Register and get free email Table of Contents alerts, saved searches, PowerPoint downloads, CME quizzes, and more
Subscribe for full-text access to content from 1998 forward and a host of useful features
Activate your current subscription (AMA members and current subscribers)
Purchase Online Access to this article for 24 hours
Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.
Download citation file:
Web of Science® Times Cited: 1
Customize your page view by dragging & repositioning the boxes below.
More Listings atJAMACareerCenter.com >
and access these and other features:
Enter your username and email address. We'll send you a link to reset your password.
Enter your username and email address. We'll send instructions on how to reset your password to the email address we have on record.
Athens and Shibboleth are access management services that provide single sign-on to protected resources. They replace the multiple user names and passwords necessary to access subscription-based content with a single user name and password that can be entered once per session. It operates independently of a user's location or IP address. If your institution uses Athens or Shibboleth authentication, please contact your site administrator to receive your user name and password.