Objective: Several cross-sectional studies have showed increased reportage of patients who are not aware of their disease conditions. This study therefore aimed at assessing the knowledge of patients about their diagnosis after visiting the doctors consulting rooms at the Cape Coast Teaching Hospital, Ghana. Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted using a convenient sampling method involving consenting patients who were presenting to the OPD clinics within the time-frame. The research instrument used was an interviewer-administered structured questionnaire. Results: A total of 440 patients were enrolled into the study with a mean age of 45.6518.08 years. The study population was slightly dominated by males who formed 55.5%. For other socio-demographic determinants, 86.8% were employed with 5.2% being health workers and most of them (91.8%) had had formal education. Only 34.1% enjoyed a consultation time of 30 minutes and above. Most of the patients (83%) were told their diagnosis, got an explanation and understood but then 17% were never told their diagnosis. Chi-square test showed that occupation, educational level, frequency of hospital visit and consultation time were associated with being told your diagnosis but no association was found between these factors and the understanding of their diagnosis. Conclusion: The study revealed that most of the patients had an appreciable knowledge of the diagnosis together with its explanation However, a minority of them were not aware of their diagnosis and this indicates the need for nationwide educational interventions to improve doctor-patient interaction.
Author and article information
] School of Medical Sciences, University of Cape Coast, Cape Coast, Ghana.
] School of Medical Sciences, University of Cape Coast and Cape Coast Teaching Hospital,
Cape Coast, Ghana.
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