Table of Contents
International Journal of Family Medicine
Volume 2015, Article ID 214146, 7 pages
Research Article

GPs’ Perceptions of Cardiovascular Risk and Views on Patient Compliance: A Qualitative Interview Study

1Research Unit for General Practice, University of Southern Denmark, JB Winsløws Vej 9A, 5000 Odense C, Denmark
2Danish Quality Unit for General Practice, JB Winsløws Vej 9A, 5000 Odense C, Denmark
3General Practitioners Lærkevej, Lærkevej 14, 5450 Otterup, Denmark
4Department of Community Medicine, University of Tromsø, The Arctic University of Norway, 9037 Tromsø, Norway

Received 29 June 2015; Accepted 16 September 2015

Academic Editor: Paul Van Royen

Copyright © 2015 Benedicte Lind Barfoed et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Objective. General practitioners’ (GPs’) perception of risk is a cornerstone of preventive care. The aims of this interview study were to explore GPs’ professional and personal attitudes and experiences regarding treatment with lipid-lowering drugs and their views on patient compliance. Methods. The material was drawn from semistructured qualitative interviews. We sampled GPs purposively from ten selected practices, ensuring diversity of demographic, professional, and personal characteristics. The GPs were encouraged to describe examples from their own practices and reflect on them and were informed that the focus was their personal attitudes and experiences. Systematic text condensation was applied for analysis in order to uncover the concepts and themes. Results. The analysis revealed the following 3 main themes: (1) use of cardiovascular guidelines and risk assessment tools, (2) strategies for managing patient compliance, and (3) GPs’ own risk management. There were substantial differences in the attitudes concerning all three themes. Conclusions. The substantial differences in the GPs’ personal and professional risk perceptions may be a key to understanding why GPs do not always follow cardiovascular guidelines. The impact on daily clinical practice, personal consultation style, and patient behaviour with regard to prevention is worth studying further.