Chronic disease in Ireland is currently reported by 38% of the adult population. Modern integrated health systems recognise that they need to be proactive and engage citizens to support healthy lifestyles. A consideration of the patient perspective is an important first step in addressing these challenges. The present study conducted a qualitative, thematic analysis of 7 semi-structured interviews with patients, all of whom had a formal diagnosis of one or more chronic diseases. Five themes emerged, which reflect that individuals with chronic disease in Ireland experience high levels of treatment burden and significant challenges managing their disease. Patients report significant psychological effects of managing chronic disease, many of which emerge as a result of poor exchange of information between the patient and healthcare provider.
Positive experience of chronic disease management was evident in some interviews and all participants showed resilience and coping associated with disease progression. This study’s findings suggest that health and social care services can be re-organised to meet the often complex needs of patients with chronic disease.