A systematic review and meta-analysis of patient activation in people living with chronic conditions. Academic Article uri icon


  • OBJECTIVE: The objectives of this review are to (1) describe the state of the science of patient activation interventions for the self-management of chronic conditions; (2) identify effective intervention elements for improving patient activation; and (3) compare intervention effectiveness across chronic conditions. METHODS: This systematic review followed the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses statement (PRISMA). PubMed, CINAHL, and Web of Science databases were searched. RESULTS: Thirty-two articles published between 2005 and 2019 were identified with intervention elements of self-management, disease management, and education. Meta-analysis of a subset of seven randomized controlled trials (n = 7) that used the 13-item version of the Patient Activation Measure with data collection points at 6 months demonstrated that patient activation did not change significantly in comparison with controls (MD = 0.25, 95 % CI = 0.02-0.47). CONCLUSION: Most interventions reported significant improvement in patient activation and were linked to tasks such as regular exercise and monitoring glucose. However, the meta-analysis of RCTs did not confirm these findings. PRACTICE IMPLICATIONS: Patient activation can be assessed and addressed uniformly across all chronic conditions to improve patient engagement in care.

published proceedings

  • Patient Educ Couns

altmetric score

  • 2.5

author list (cited authors)

  • Cuevas, H., Heitkemper, E., Huang, Y., Jang, D. E., Garca, A. A., & Zuiga, J. A.

citation count

  • 4

complete list of authors

  • Cuevas, Heather||Heitkemper, Elizabeth||Huang, Ya-Ching||Jang, Dong Eun||García, Alexandra A||Zuñiga, Julie A

publication date

  • January 2021