Patient-mediated interventions improve professional practice

Patient-mediated interventions improve professional practice

Brian McAvoy
Clinical question

Compared with usual care or no strategies, how effective are patient-mediated interventions in improving professional practice (adherence to clinical practice guidelines or recommendations for clinical practice)?

Bottom line

Two types of patient‐mediated interventions, patient‐reported health information and patient education, improved professional practice by increasing healthcare professionals' adherence to recommended clinical practice (moderate‐certainty evidence). Patient information also improved professional practice (low‐certainty evidence). Patient-decision aids made little or no difference to the number of healthcare professionals who adhered to recommended clinical practice (low‐certainty evidence). The impact of these interventions on patient health and satisfaction, adverse events and resource use was more uncertain, mostly due to very-low-certainty evidence or lack of evidence.


It was not certain all types of patient‐mediated interventions were relevant, due to lack of research for several types of interventions, such as patient feedback about clinical practice, patients being members of committees or boards, or patient‐led training or education of healthcare professionals.


There are many approaches to influencing practice among healthcare professionals. These approaches include audit and feedback, reminders, educational materials, educational outreach visits, educational meetings or conferences, use of local opinion leaders, financial incentives and organisational interventions. Patient‐mediated interventions are aimed at changing the performance of healthcare professionals through interactions with patients, or through information provided by or to patients.

Cochrane Systematic Review

Fonhus MS et al. Patient-mediated interventions to improve professional practice. Cochrane Reviews, 2019, Issue 9. Art. No.: CD012472.DOI: 10.1002/14651858. CD012472.pub2. This review contains 25 studies involving 12,268 participants.