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Chair of General Psychology and Biopsychology
reserach - health

Motivational elements of health-related bahavior

Psychology und health

Health-related behavior has tremendous impacts on mortality as well as it prevents worse progression of diseases. Furthermore, health-related behavior can foster quality of life, bring disability adjusted life-years (DAILY), and it can repel comorbidities like psychic disorders. Besides medical treatments, psychological factors play a substantial role in the interaction of patients with their social and medical environment. For example, a patient's motivational condition is a crucial factor for beginning and staying on treatment (e.g. rehab or therapy) and medicial adherence.

In our projects we seek for such drivers and effect sizes of health-related behavior. The overall question is : What brings people to comply with the medication and treatment the medical staff prescribes? What drives people to stick up to those goals for a long period of time? Especially in cases of severe, long-term, and chronic diseases (e.g. ACS; acute coronary syndrome) the medical adherence of the patients is a crucial factor for life expectancy.


Cooperation / Partners

  • Klinik für Innere Medizin I Kardiologie/Angiologie/Intensivmedizin, Klinikum Chemnitz gGmbh
  • AstraZeneca GmbH, Tinsdaler Weg 183, 22880 Wedel


  • Adherence of ACS patients. In this project we foster patients to deal with a smartphone app after their  discharge from hospital. We cover questions like: How do people use this kind of new media in terms of thei health? Which cognitive, motivational, an volitional processes form a change in the patients's attitudes and behavior? Are the patients "rewarded" correctly by the app, when they show treatment integrity and adherence?
  • Motivational support for ACS patients. We create text messages that are sent to patients over multiple channels (SMS, e-mail, apps, telephone, CD's). These messages are created on an empirical background for effective treatments. Only evidence-based treatments form the body of the text messages. Together with knowledge of social, motivation, and emotional psychology these messages help people to imply treatment and medical adherence to their everyday life. All messages are worded with principles of learning and conditioning in mind.




picture credits: Heart Shape by pbsbluejay