Why do patients change their general practitioner? Suggestions on corrective actions
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- Buja, A., Cavinato, M., Perissinotto, E. et al. Ir J Med Sci (2011) 180: 149. doi:10.1007/s11845-010-0571-6
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The aim of this study was to determine what made people want to change their choice of general practitioners (GP). Furthermore, the study aimed to correlate the perceived quality of patient-GP communication with the motives inducing individuals to change their doctors.
All people requesting to change their GPs were asked by the office staff to complete a questionnaire.
The study identifies the following main reasons for changing GP: patients perceived the doctor as unwilling to listen to them; patients did not receive the services that they considered useful for their health; and patients perceived the doctor’s disorganization as an obstacle to accessibility.
These findings suggest several actions to improve the doctor–patient relationship, including training for physicians to develop their communication skills; involving public health operators in helping to understand the rights and obligations of patients and doctors; and a reorganization of the GP’s workload.