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PHYSICIAN VISITS: How often should you see your doctor?

Little is known about how often you should see your doctor, or the best interval between follow-up visits to physicians, according to the authors, who are all affiliated with Harvard Medical School.  It’s a question of interest in this era of accountable care organizations (ACOs), in which new care models are being fashioned.  The authors do not end up making any recommendations as to the optimal frequency for physician visits, but they do present some suggestions as to how to begin to think about making the health care system more efficient.  For example, ACOs could re-engineer the referral process to specialists to avoid unnecessary first visits.  Also, technology could be used more effectively to replace face-to-face encounters in the office or clinic.

Source: Ganguli, I., Wasfy, J.H., and Ferris, T.G. (2015, Apr. 6). What is the right number of clinic appointments? Visit frequency and the accountable care organization. JAMA, E1-E2. Retrieved from http://jama.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=2241120&resultClick=3  Posted by AHA Resource Center (312) 422-2050, rc@aha.org

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