Background: Team-based practice in primary care has been advocated for improved access, quality, effectiveness, and cost-efficiency of primary health care services, but there is limited empirical evidence supporting it.
Objective: To examine the impact of team-based practice on patients' perception of several process and outcome indicators from patients' perspective.
Data and methods: Micro data from the 2007-08 Canadian Survey of Experiences with Primary Health Care conducted by Statistics Canada were utilized. Regression techniques and propensity score matching method were used to examine the impact of team-based primary care on several process and outcome indicators of primary care.
Results: The estimated average treatment effect of team-based care was positively significant and robust for access to after-hours care, quality of care, confidence in the system, overall coordination of care, and patient centeredness. Although the estimated average treatment effects for the two dimensions of follow-up coordination, continuity of care, health promotion and disease prevention initiatives, and utilization of physician and nurse services were statistically significant, sensitivity test results showed that these results were unreliable.
Conclusions: Team-based primary care improves patients' perception of process and outcome indicators in the area of access to after-hours care, quality of care, confidence in the system, overall coordination and patient centeredness. Future research needs to establish the causal link between team-based primary care and health outcomes of patients.
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