BACKGROUND:Traditional "inverted triangle" healthcare resources allocation model in China has wasted a lot of health resources. The Chinese health reform began to strengthens the role of the primary health institutions in delivering primary health care especially in rural areas in the background of large development gap between urban-rural health and rapid growth in the incidence of chronic diseases in rural. We take hypertensive patients as an example, to verify the effect of policy implementation through distribution characteristics of rural primary health institutions preference of hypertensive patients and explore the influencing factor that promoting rationalized use of medical care for patients with chronic disease as well as rational allocation of health resources in rural areas. METHODS:A cross-sectional survey was conducted in Heilongjiang, a province in northeastern China by using a self-designed questionnaire. Stratified cluster sampling was used to choose 484 hypertensive patients from two villages in Heilongjiang province in 2010. RESULTS:About 88.4% of respondents reported preferred primary health institutions (83.5% preferred village clinics and 4.9% preferred township hospitals), 49.4% of respondents knew hypertension management administered by primary health institutions, 53.5% received hypertension education from primary care physicians, more than half of respondents reported that they didn't receive telephone interviews and family visits from primary care physicians over the past 6 months. Residence closer to the primary health institutions (OR = 10.360), trust in village doctors (OR = 7.323), elders (OR = 3.001), and asked for return visits by primary health physicians (OR = 2.073) promote preferences for primary health institutions. CONCLUSIONS:Accessibility to primary healthcare and doctor-patient trust stimulate patients to choose the primary health institutions. Primary health institutions should improve general approach to hypertension management and enhance the ability of providing basic public health services.