Using the Health Belief Model to explain patient involvement in patient safety

Andrea C. Bishop, G. Ross Baker, Todd A. Boyle, Neil J. MacKinnon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Background: With the knowledge that patient safety incidents can significantly impact patients, providers and health-care organizations, greater emphasis on patient involvement as a means to mitigate risks warrants further research. Objective: To understand whether patient perceptions of patient safety play a role in patient involvement in factual and challenging patient safety practices and whether the constructs of the Health Belief Model (HBM) help to explain such perceptions. Design: Partial least squares (PLS) analysis of survey data. Setting and Participants: Four inpatient units located in two tertiary hospitals in Atlantic Canada. Patients discharged from participating units between November 2010 and January 2011. Intervention: None. Results: A total of 217 of the 587 patient surveys were returned for a final response rate of 37.0%. The PLS analysis revealed relationships between patient perceptions of threat and self-efficacy and the performance of factual and challenging patient safety practices, explaining 46 and 42% of the variance, respectively. Discussion: The results from this study provide evidence for the constructs and relationships set forth by the HBM. Perceptions of patient safety were shown to influence patient likelihood for engaging in selected patient safety practices. While perceptions of barriers and benefits and threats were found to be a contributing factor to patient involvement in patient safety practices, self-efficacy plays an important role as a mediating factor. Conclusions: Overall, the use of the HBM within patient safety provides for increased understanding of how such perceptions can be influenced to improve patient engagement in promoting safer health care.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3019-3033
Number of pages15
JournalHealth Expectations
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Health Belief Model
  • Partial least squares
  • Patient involvement
  • Patient safety
  • Survey

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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