The influence of patient-practitioner agreement on outcome of care

Am J Public Health. 1981 Feb;71(2):127-31. doi: 10.2105/ajph.71.2.127.


A previous study suggested that patient-practitioner agreement and follow-up in ambulatory care facilitates problem resolution as judged by patients. In this study in another medical practice, practitioner-patient agreement on what problems required follow-up was associated with greater problem resolution as judged by the practitioners regardless of the severity of the problems. In this study, patients did not judge problems mentioned only by themselves to be less improved than problems mentioned by both them and their practitioners. However, in this study more of the problems mentioned only by patients were mentioned in the note of the visit contained in the medical record. Patients expected less and reported less improvements of problems that were neither mentioned by the practitioner nor written in the medical record than was the case for problems listed both by patients and practitioners. The findings of this study confirm those of the previous study in suggesting that practitioner-patient agreement about problems is associated with greater expectations for improvement and with better outcome as perceived by patients. In addition, they indicate that practitioners also report better outcome under the same circumstances.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Ambulatory Care
  • Child
  • Health Maintenance Organizations
  • Humans
  • Maryland
  • Medical Records
  • Outcome and Process Assessment, Health Care*
  • Patient Participation
  • Physician-Patient Relations*