Background: Cardiovascular disease is the most common cause of mortality in most countries and the leading cause in Iran. There are two categories of risk-factors associated with this disease including modifiable risk factors such as smoking, dietary habits, alcohol consumption and physical activity and non-modifiable factors such as age, gender, genetics and family history. This study was performed to determine the preventive behaviors against cardiovascular disease based on the Health Belief Model among people at risk in Birjand City.
Methods: This cross-sectional study was performed on 112 individuals at risk of cardiovascular disease who were referred to health centers across Birjand city in the summer of 2016. To collect data, a demographics form and self-made questionnaires were used that covered items on knowledge, health belief model constructs, and preventive behaviors against cardiovascular disease. The collected data were analyzed using SPSS version 16 and correlation coefficient Pearson, linear regression, T-test and ANOVA. The significant level was set at α=0.05.
Results: Of the participants, 17% were male and 83% female with an overall mean age of 41.4±9.6 years. Also, 93.8% of the participants were married and most of them (67%) were housewives. Mean scores of knowledge was 24.05±7.83, perceived susceptibility 14.31±2.98, perceived severity 24.41±4.02, perceived benefits 30.32±3.45, perceived barrier 15.34±4.54, and perceived self-efficacy 13.50±2.93. Pearson correlation test showed a significant correlation between perceived benefits, perceived barriers, self-efficacy, knowledge and preventive behaviors. Linear regression test showed that self-efficacy had the greatest impact on preventive behaviors. The differences in knowledge, perceived sensitivity, and self-efficacy were significant across different educational levels (α=0.05).
Conclusions: With regards to the confirmed correlation between knowledge, perceived barriers, perceived benefits, perceived self-efficiency, and adoption of preventive behaviors, it seems that the mere understanding of risks and vulnerability does not suffice for adherence to health behaviors. Thus, consideration of barriers, benefits and self-efficacy in educational programs creates a higher level of adhesion to preventive behaviors against cardiovascular disease in people at risk