This comprehensive yet practical handbook consolidates information needed by health psychologists working alongside other healthcare professionals. It facilitates the progression of the learner from the classroom to the clinical setting by focusing on the translation of science to practice using practical examples. The Handbook is divided into four major parts. Part I highlights practical issues faced by health psychologists in a medical setting (how to motivate patients, consultation-liaison, assessment and screening, brief psychotherapies, ethical issues, etc.) Part II concentrates on treating unhealthy behaviors (alcohol and nicotine use, noncompliance, overeating/obesity, physical inactivity, stress). Part III considers behavioral aspects of medical problems (pain management, hypertension, diabetes, cancer, sexual dysfunction, HIV/AIDS, irritable bowel syndrome, insomnia). And Part IV takes up special issues relevant to practice and research in the field (minority issues, women’s issues, working with geriatric populations, public health approaches to health psychology and behavioral medicine). The Handbook will prove to be an invaluable resource for those already working in the field of health psychology as well as for those in training.

Adherence to Medical Recommendations

Adherence to medical recommendations

The failure to adhere to medical recommendations is a significant and multifaceted health care problem. Estimates are that 30% to 70% of patients do not fully adhere to the medical advice of their physicians (National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, 1998). Moreover, up to 80% of patients are unsuccessful in following recommendations for behavioral changes such as smoking cessation and dietary restrictions.

Adherence is a complex behavioral process that is determined largely by environmental influences on the patient. However, the patient's environment is broad, extending beyond his or her immediate surroundings to encompass associated health care providers and the health care organization in which the patient receives services. Nonadherence is far more than a patient problem, and efforts that ...

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