Assessing patient’s readiness for change is one of several strategies that can facilitate communication about self-management of chronic illness. Use these two questions to assess patients’ readiness for change:
1. “How important is it to you to make this change, on a scale of 0 to 10 with 10 being extremely important?”
This question puts the physician and patient on the same page with regard to goals.
2. “How confident are you that you can make this change, on a scale of 0 to 10 with 10 being extremely confident?”
Patients need to feel confident that they can make changes that will positively affect their health. Many patients have only experienced failure in making health changes and doubt their ability to effectively influence their health. Physicians can increase their confidence by emphasizing how small, incremental steps can improve their health.
Sign up to receive FPM's free, weekly e-newsletter, "Quick Tips & Insights," featuring practical, peer-reviewed advice for improving practice, enhancing the patient experience, and developing a rewarding career.