U.S. Preventive Services Task Force: highlights of the 1996 report

Am Fam Physician. 1997 Feb 1;55(2):567-76, 581-2.


The recent report of the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force is a compendium of the scientific evidence supporting clinical preventive services that might be offered by primary care physicians. Pediatric recommendations include height, weight and blood pressure measurements, neonatal screening for hemoglobinopathies and counseling about injury prevention, diet and exercise, sexual behavior, substance abuse and dental health. Lead screening is recommended in communities with a high prevalence of elevated lead levels. Adult recommendations include measurement of blood pressure and weight, selective screening for elevated total cholesterol level, screening persons over age 50 for colorectal cancer, screening women for cervical cancer at least every three years, and screening women 50 to 69 years of age for breast cancer with mammography every one to two years. Counseling patients about substance abuse, diet and exercise, injury prevention, sexual behavior and dental health is recommended. Women of childbearing age should receive folic acid supplementation to prevent neural tube defects if they should become pregnant. Multiple marker testing is recommended for women over age 35 to screen for Down syndrome. Immunization recommendations are similar to those of other national groups.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Cause of Death
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Evidence-Based Medicine*
  • Female
  • Health Promotion
  • Humans
  • Immunization Schedule
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Male
  • Mass Screening
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasms / prevention & control
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications / prevention & control
  • Primary Health Care*
  • Primary Prevention*
  • United States