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Relationship of wives' preventive health orientation to their beliefs about heart disease in husbands.
  • Published Date:
    1977 Jan-Feb
  • Source:
    Public Health Rep. 92(1):65-71
  • Language:
    English
Filetype[PDF-1.22 MB]


Details:
  • Personal Authors:
  • Pubmed ID:
    834845
  • Pubmed Central ID:
    PMCnull
  • Description:
    Selected by area probability sampling, 199 wives residing in the city and county of Lebanon, Pennsylvania, were interviewed about their attitudes, opinions, beliefs, and behavior in respect to the role that wives can play in helping to prevent heart disease in husbands. After the "Don't know" respondents were eliminated, the remaining respondents were categorized into a continuum of low, medium, and high levels of preventive health orientation, according to how much of a role they believed wives could play in the prevention of heart disease in husbands. The orientations were then cross-tabulated with several variables in a health belief model (initially formulated by G. M. Hochbaum and associates and discussed in a monograph edited by M. H. Becker) and also with several sociodemographic variables. A substantial majority of the 187 wives expressed beliefs that wives could play some or very much of a role in preventing heart disease in husbands, that treatment for heart disease was effective, and that the disease was preventable. The majority indicated that they had not worried about their husbands getting heart disease. Magazines and television had been their main sources of information about the condition. Emphasis was placed on the wives who ranked low on the preventive health orientation continuum, since it is people like these who are of most concern to health educators and health care providers. Compared with the medium-ranked and high-ranked respondents, fewer of the low-ranked group (a) had ever suggested any health-related behavior to their husbands, (b) felt that their husbands were very susceptible to heart disease, or (c) believed that treatment was very effective. The majority of wives in the low group nevertheless considered heart disease to be a serious condition that would reduce a person's chances of living a normal life. With chi-square as a measure of statistical significance and Cramer's V as a measure of the strength of relationships, statistically significant support was found for the relationships between the wives' preventive health orientation and their perceptions of (a) the seriousness of heart disease, (b) their husband's susceptibility to it, (c) the effectiveness of treatment, and (d) the disease's preventability (all variables in the health belief model), as well as between the orientation and place of residence, years of education, and both the respondent's and husband's age. The relationships, however, were not very strong.

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