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Evaluation of the use of rural health clinics: attitudes and behaviors of primary care physicians in service areas of nurse practitioner clinics.
  • Published Date:
    1982 Nov-Dec
  • Source:
    Public Health Rep. 97(6):566-571
  • Language:
Filetype[PDF-826.19 KB]

  • Alternative Title:
    Public Health Rep
  • Description:
    In response to concerns of the directors of Rural Health Initiative projects in Mississippi, a study was conducted to examine factors related to use of rural health clinics. This report focuses on attitudes and behaviors of primary care physicians in the service areas of four clinics staffed by nurse practitioners. Data for this evaluation were obtained via mail questionnaires sent to 41 primary care physicians in the service areas of the clinics. Usable responses were received from 25 (61.0 percent) of the physicians. The data indicate that a majority of these physicians approve of the nurse practitioner concept. Although there is evidence to support a positive correlation between previous experience and knowledge concerning nurse practitioners and physician acceptance of the nurse practitioner concept, only about half of the physicians reported that anyone had ever contacted them to talk about the clinic. Only about a quarter of the physicians had ever visited the rural health clinic, but 60 percent indicated that they would like to do so. These findings indicate a need to develop closer working relationships with all primary care physicians in the service area of a rural health clinic. The data indicate that when such a closer relationship existed, physicians were satisfied with the outcome of interactions. Twelve (48 percent) physicians stated that they had patient(s) referred to them by the clinic. Among these physicians 77.8 percent were satisfied with the information that they had received on the patient's condition. Fewer physicians (8 or 32.0 percent) reported that they had received a call from the nurse practitioner clinic to consult about one of the physician's patients. The physicians were satisfied with the outcome of the consultation in each instance that was reported.

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