In the healthcare setting, one can assess motivation through informal and formal avenues. The formal approach involves testing the patient for signs of the disease. If an illness appears to be resurfacing, then the patient is not motivated. Conversely, when the tests reveal no signs of the ailment, then the patient could be motivated. These formal assessments could also include physical observations of the patient’s level of discomfort, pain or other observable symptoms. Observations are part of the formal diagnosis of a disease. Alternatively, one may assess motivation through informal pathways such as speech patterns and enthusiasm towards a treatment plan. When a medical practitioner shares information about how to manage the disease, the unmotivated patient could respond by saying negative things about it or asking whether it is really necessary. Conversely, a motivated patient will be enthusiastic about treatment plan and will constantly seek guidance on how to adhere to the plan.
Strategies for helping Mr. Allen stick to his treatment plan
First, the concerned nursing educator should build a trusting relationship with Mr. Allen. He needs to know that she is on his side. Furthermore, whenever Mr. Allen has something to say, the nurse should listen carefully and reflect on it before making recommendations. Patients are open to suggestions when their nurses respect them. Talking down to Mr. Allen would only foster resistance and lead to difficulties in implementation of the plan.
Mr. Allen ought to have incentives that can motivate him. Some patients respond well to discussions about their families while others are motivated by economic prospects. The nursing practitioner needs to discover some of the things that are valuable to Mr. Allen such that she can use them to motivate him. From the case study, it is clear that Mr. Allen hates the thought of being hospitalized, so the nursing educator could use this as an incentive. Additionally, the two of them need to work together on setting some realistic goals. The nursing educator ought to work on simple goals at the beginning and then build them to more complex ones after he has demonstrated success in the basic ones. After setting goals, the two parties should then have a plan on how to achieve them. The nursing instructor should be clear about every aspect of treatment such that Mr. Allen does not get confused (Elliot et. al., 2007).
Health Belief Model and preventive health behavior
The Heath Belief Model prescribes four key aspects for improvement of patient’s health. The first is perceived susceptibility, which denotes a patient’s perception that an illness is relevant to him or her. In Mr. Allen’s case, he knows that he is diabetic so he believes that lack of preventive behavior can cost him his health. Conversely, perceived severity is the belief that one’s illness would be severe enough to lead to social and physical complications (Butterworth, 2008). To get Mr. Allen to engage in preventive behavior, he needs to be reminded of the consequences of failing to do so. For instance, he had to stay absent from work and his family after being hospitalized. Dilapidation could arise if the condition worsens, so he needs to know this as well. Perceived benefits refer to the extent to which a patient believes that behavior will prevent or treat the ailment. The nursing educator should emphasis the positive benefits of staying healthy especially as a diabetic. Perceived cost is the complexity, accessibility and ease of treatment. Mr. Allen needs to understand that controlling his diet, exercising and monitoring his insulin levels are not complicated. The nursing educator should simplify them for him.
Butterworth, S. (2008). Influencing patient adherence to treatment guidelines. Supplement to Journal of Managed Care Pharmacy, 14(6), S21-25.
Elliot, D., Goldberg, L., Kuehl, K. (2007). The PHLAME (Promoting Healthy Lifestyles: Alternative Models’ Effects) firefighter study: outcomes of two models of behavior change. J Occup Environ Med, 49,204-13