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J Clin Psychol Med Settings. 2010 Jun;17(2):103-15. doi: 10.1007/s10880-010-9188-1.

Physician identification and management of psychosocial problems in primary care.

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Department of Psychology, Auburn University, 226 Thach Hall, Auburn, AL 36849-5214, USA.


Often the burden of identifying children with behavioral or developmental problems is left up to the primary care physician (PCP). However, previous literature shows that PCPs consistently underidentify children with developmental/behavioral problems in pediatric primary care. For the current study, questionnaires containing three vignettes followed by questions addressing common psychosocial problems, general questions about their practice and training, and the Physician Belief Scale were distributed to physicians. Results indicated that physicians were better at identifying severe problems, had more difficulty identifying psychosocial problems with mild symptomatology, and tended to refer to a medical specialist or mental health professional more often for severe problems, depression or a developmental problem. Physicians tended to view treating psychosocial problems favorably.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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