Application of the Integrated Behavioral Method – Health System Example

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"Application of the Integrated Behavioral Method" is an engrossing example of a paper on the health system. The integrated behavioral model (IBM) is anchored on several constructs that determine the behavior of an individual including attitude, affect, self-efficacy with regard to the behavior and subjective norm (Ajzen,   Albarraci & Hornik, 2007). One of the most important aspects of IBM is the attempt to understand or discover factors that determine an individual’ s intention to perform a certain behavior.   The motivation to perform a recommended behavior is crucial in any attempt to encourage a patient to adopt a preferred health behavior.

In addition to major behavioral determinants such as attitude and the motivation to perform a recommended health behavior, knowledge and skills to perform the before also forms an important integral part of the behavioral change process. This paper entails the application of the integrated behavioral model to encourage African American and Asian American male patients who have the reluctance to go regular periodontal evaluations and treatment to embrace the behavior of going for regular dental check-ups.                       The first step in changing the patients’ behavior should involve analysis of reasons behind their unwillingness or inability to turn up for the periodontal evaluation and treatment according to the recommended number of times per year.   This should entail the identification of communal factors such as beliefs, social and personal factors that hinder the patients from performing the recommended behavior (Glanz & Viswanath, 2008).

  The male patients’ intention to go the evaluation and treatment could be influenced by several factors including environmental constraints, lack of knowledge on the importance of the behavior and resources to pay for the health interventions.   Upon identification of the various constraints preventing the patients from attending the recommended health behavior, such constraints require resolution in order to encourage the patients to begin seeking the intervention as recommended.

In order to encourage the patients to turn up for periodontal evaluation and treatment, I would contact a study to establish knowledge gaps among the patients on the importance of the regular periodontal evaluations and treatment.                       The next step would entail filling up the knowledge gap by educating the community and patients on the importance of regular dental checkups.

The other important step would entail understanding their attitude towards the recommended regular evaluations and treatment and attempt to impart the right attitude through emphasizing the benefits of the recommended behavior both to the patients and their family members or community (Glanz & Viswanath, 2008). I would also attempt to resolve health belief problems which could be influencing the patients’ intentions to seek dental health care. The influence of health beliefs on the behavior of patients can be addressed by presenting facts to the patients about their behavior.

In addition, I would spend significant time to understand common personal problems among male patients from the two races through interaction with the patients. This step would entail analysis of their individual situations and determination of how such situations interfere with their ability to seeking dental health care. Problems such as financial constraints to meet the cost of the recommended dental care can be addressed through the introduction of special and affordable packages for such people.                       Motivation to perform the recommended health behavior forms the other major step that could be taken to encourage the patients to turn-up for the periodontal disease evaluation and treatment.

  The firsts step in motivating the patients would entail the provision of therapeutic education to the patient with the aim of making them aware of the problem they are facing, the risk in not undertaking the regular periodontal disease evaluation and treatment.   This process will allow the patients to integrate these notions and serve as a motivation towards following the recommended regular evaluations and treatments.                       According to Sebeki (2007), therapeutic education has been proven effective in helping patients follow a treatment recommendation over a long period of time as well as helping them to change an aspect of their lifestyle.

The patients can be motivated through the introduction of incentives in the community such as the provision of free complete health check-up along with the dental checkups.   The concept of self-efficiency proposed under the integrated behavioral model can also be applied to encourage the patients to attend the regular checkups through a strong emphasis on the benefits accrued from the recommended behavior.

The patients’ intentions to perform the recommended behavior could also be enhanced through the embracing of community dental care where the health care services are taken closer to the patients. Through, this strategy, a considerably higher number of patients participating in periodontal disease evaluation can be easily attained. Conclusion                       The integrated behavioral model proposes various key determinants towards the performance of a recommended health behavior including attitude, affect, self-efficacy, knowledge and motivational factors. In context to the provided scenario, reluctance to seek regular periodontal evaluations and treat male patients with the African/Asian origin can be addressed through an understanding of their attitudes, health beliefs, provision of therapeutic knowledge and motivational incentives.   Provision of community dental care can also enhance the accessibility of periodontal disease evaluation and treatment.

References

Ajzen, I., Albarraci, D & Hornik, R. (2007). Prediction and change of health behavior: Applying the reasoned action approach. London: Routledge.

Glanz, G & Viswanath, B. (2008). Health behavior and health education: Theory, research, and practice (4th ed.). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons.

Sebeki, L. (2007). Leading-edge health education issues. London: Nova Publishers.

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