Coordination of Primary Health Care

  • Rachel Foskett-Tharby

    Student thesis: Phd


    BackgroundImproving coordination of care is a major challenge for health systems internationally. Tools are required to evaluate alternative approaches to improve coordination from the patient perspective. This study aimed to develop and validate a new measure of coordination for use in a primary care setting.MethodsFour methods were used. Firstly, a concept analysis was undertaken to identify the essential attributes of coordination drawing upon literature from health and organisational studies and to establish its boundaries with related concepts such as continuity of care, integration and patient centred care. Secondly, existing measures of coordination were reviewed to assess the extent to which item content reflected the definition arising from the concept analysis and to appraise psychometric properties. Thirdly, a new instrument, the Care Coordination Questionnaire (CCQ), was developed utilising items from existing questionnaires and others developed following focus groups with 30 patients. Ten cognitive interviews were used to evaluate the items generated. Finally, the CCQ was administered in a cross sectional survey to 980 patients. Item and model analyses were performed. Test-retest reliability was evaluated through a second administration of the CCQ after two weeks. Concurrent validity was evaluated through correlation with the Client Perceptions of Coordination Questionnaire (CPCQ). Construct validity was evaluated through correlation with responses to a global coordination item and a satisfaction scale and the testing of two a prior hypotheses: i) coordination scores would decrease with increasing numbers of providers and ii) coordination scores would decrease with increasing numbers of long-term conditions.ResultsThe concept analysis suggested that coordination should be considered as a process for the organisation of patient care characterised by: purposeful activity, information exchange, knowledge of roles and responsibilities, and responsiveness to change. The systematic review identified 5 existing measures of coordination and a further 10 measures which incorporated a coordination subscale. Only one demonstrated conceptual coverage but had poor psychometric properties. A new instrument was therefore developed and tested as described above. 299 completed surveys were returned. Respondents were predominantly elderly and of white ethnicity; approximately half were female. Five items were deleted following item analyses. Model analysis suggested a four factor two-level model of coordination comprising of 18 items. This correlated well with the CPCQ, the global coordination item and satisfaction scale. The a priori hypotheses were upheld. Retest reliability was acceptable at the patient group level.ConclusionsThe CCQ has demonstrated good psychometric characteristics in terms of item responses, reliability and construct validity. Further exploration of these properties is required in a larger, more diverse sample before it can be recommended for widespread use, but it shows potential utility in the evaluation of different approaches to coordinating care.
    Date of Award31 Dec 2014
    Original languageEnglish
    Awarding Institution
    • The University of Manchester
    SupervisorBonnie Sibbald (Supervisor), David Reeves (Supervisor) & Elaine Harkness (Supervisor)


    • Measure development
    • Coordination of care
    • Primary care

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