Korean J Women Health Nurs.  2020 Jun;26(2):120-130. 10.4069/kjwhn.2020.06.13.

Theoretical evaluation of Cox’s interaction model of client health behavior for health promotion in adult women

  • 1Mo-Im Kim Nursing Research Institute and College of Nursing, Yonsei University, Seoul, Korea


This literature review aimed to evaluate Cox’s interaction model of client health behavior (IMCHB) as used in studies on women’s health.
Using keyword combinations of “women” and “IMCHB” or “interaction model of client health behavior,” we searched the PubMed, MEDLINE, Embase, and RISS databases for studies on the promotion of women’s health published from January 2009 to April 2019. Finally, 11 studies were selected and evaluated according to seven criteria for theory evaluation, which combined Fawcett’s theory evaluation criteria and Chinn and Kramer’s criteria.
We found that the IMCHB corresponds to a verifiable practical level of a middle-range theory, although it may be partially abstract. It contains all four concepts of the metaparadigm of nursing, in terms of a holistic philosophical approach. A theoretical evaluation demonstrated that the IMCHB has significance, generality, testability, empirical adequacy, and pragmatic adequacy for nursing practice and research. However, the lack of clear conceptual definitions and the presence of complex relationships among concepts resulted in a lack of internal consistency and parsimony.
According to an in-depth verification through a review of the literature, the IMCHB has been used as a health promotion intervention strategy for various populations of women and has led to useful results in nursing practice. The IMCHB was confirmed to be a suitable theory for experimental and clinical research. Future research can build on this middle-range theory for women’s health research and practice.


Health promotion; Nursing theory; Women
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