Mediators and moderators of the effective (and ineffective) healthcare provider-patient therapeutic relationship

Research has shown that a positive relationship between patients and their health care providers has a significant impact on the success of medical, psychological and drug treatments. The therapeutic relationship has a positive impact on both psychological and physiological factors, such as increasing hope and strengthening the immune system. In addition, the therapeutic relationship may have healing power in and of itself. Although the connection between the success of treatments and a therapeutic relationship has been established, little research has been done to identify the factors that contribute to an effective or ineffective relationship between a patient and health care provider. Robinder Bedi’s doctoral research will identify the factors that create a strong alliance. Health care professionals will be able to use this knowledge to establish more effective therapeutic relationships with patients, and to intervene early in situations where concerns about the relationship may impair treatment. Ultimately, this research should help improve patient outcomes and satisfaction with their care.