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Health Aff (Millwood). 2006 Nov-Dec;25(6):1733-7.

After-hours care in the United Kingdom, Denmark, and the Netherlands: new models.

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  • 1Centre for Quality of Care Research (WOK), Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Center, the Netherlands.


There are indications that after-hours care in some countries is of poor quality. European after-hours care is shifting away from individual and group practices with local after-hours call schedules toward large-scale after-hours care services. Experiences with primary care cooperatives in three countries show that this model can lighten physicians' workloads, reduce the number of face-to-face contacts, reduce use of emergency services and hospital admissions, and lower costs. Most patients accept these new models but are dissatisfied if they expect to see a physician. Local or regional integration of all emergency services seems to be the most promising model for after-hours care.

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