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Fam Pract. 2007 Feb;24(1):41-7. Epub 2006 Nov 1.

Personalised care, access, quality and team coordination are the main dimensions of family medicine output.

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Institut Català de la Salut (ICS), Spain.



Health organisations continually seek good output indicators of family medicine health care provision because they are accountable to society, they need to compare services, and need to evaluate the impact of organisational reforms.


Using the sources of information routinely available in health-service management, we sought to assess the groups of components of primary health care output that best serve to define the outcome of family medicine services.


Cross-sectional descriptive study. SITE: Primary health care in Catalunya.


213 primary health care teams.


Information was collected on team structure, user satisfaction, quality-of-professional-life of the health care professionals, and physicians' drug prescription. Confirmatory Factor Analysis was used to assess the number of dimensions that best explained the family medicine outcome.


The model that best fits the structure of the data (AGFI=0.778) is that which consists of three dimensions i.e. (1) the individual accessibility to the services and professional-patient relationship; (2) the coordination within the health care team; (3) the scientific-technical quality of the service. The first two of these dimensions were correlated between themselves, but the third was totally independent of the other two.


Using sources of information that are routinely employed in primary health care services management, the model enables the measurement of the output of family medicine by considering the dimensions such as inter-personnel relationships, internal coordination of the team and the scientific-technical quality of the service. Despite its simplicity, this measure of the output incorporates the views not only of the users but of the health care professionals, as well.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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