Open Access Highly Accessed Research article

Scoping review of patient-centered care approaches in healthcare

Marissa K Constand*, Joy C MacDermid, Vanina Dal Bello-Haas and Mary Law

Author Affiliations

School of Rehabilitation Science, McMaster University, 1400 Main Street West, L8S 1C7, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

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BMC Health Services Research 2014, 14:271  doi:10.1186/1472-6963-14-271

Published: 19 June 2014



The purpose of this scoping review was to describe how three tenants of patient-centered care provision: communication, partnership, and health promotion are addressed in patient-centered care models/frameworks across the literature.


A scoping review of literature published in English since 1990 was conducted using Medline, CINAHL, and EMBASE. A key term search strategy was employed using “patient-centered care”, “client-centered care”, “framework” and “model” to identify relevant studies.


Application of the search strategy resulted in a hit total of 101 articles. Nineteen articles met inclusion criteria, of which 12 were review articles; 5 were qualitative research papers; one was a randomized control trial; and one was a prospective study. From these articles, 25 different patient-centered care frameworks/models were identified.


The fact that all identified approaches to patient-centered care incorporated strategies to achieve effective communication, partnership, and health promotion indicates that clinicians can select a patient-centered approach from the literature that best suits their patient’s needs, and be confident that it will satisfy the three core elements of patient-centered care provision. While empirical literature on specific patient-centric frameworks and models was limited, much empiric evidence was sourced for the most consistently defined component of patient-centered care, communication.

Patient-centered care; Model; Framework