Date of Conferral







Jesus Tanguma


Primary open-angle glaucoma is the most common form of glaucoma and the second-leading cause of preventable blindness worldwide. Although timely diagnosis and proper adherence to therapeutic regimen prevent blindness, patient nonadherence continues to be the greatest challenge to effective treatment. Preliminary research suggested that culturally interactive education delivery may increase patient adherence. However, this education intervention had not occurred with glaucoma treatment. The transtheoretical model of behavior change served as the framework for this study. The research questions addressed the effect that glaucoma education provided by a culturally competent patient navigator had on patient knowledge of glaucoma, adherence to medication use, and follow-up appointment attendance. This quantitative study had a longitudinal design with archival data from 206 Russian Eastern European immigrant patients. The control group had a standard appointment with an ophthalmologist, and the experimental group had an interactive educational experience with a patient navigator after the standard appointment. The navigator administered the Glaucoma Knowledge Index at three time points: before the appointment (T1), after the appointment (T2), and at a 1-month follow-up (T3). The intervention group showed a statistically significant increase in glaucoma knowledge retention at T2 and T3. However, this increase in knowledge did not correspond to a statistically significant difference in patients’ adherence to follow-up eye exam attendance or ocular medication adherence. The outcome of this study may form the basis for discussions among policymakers leading to positive social change.

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