Assessment of Primary Care Physicians’ Attitudes Towards Guidelines, Continuing Medical Education, and Delegation
DOI: 10.3238/zfa.2013.0023-0030german translation / full article
Background: Evidence-based guidelines of the German College of General Practitioners and Family Physicians (DEGAM) are developed for the implementation of scientific knowledge into practice. However, their implementation has potential for improvement. In order to identify starting points for further development and improvement of existing implementation strategies, the quality improvement section of DEGAM led a survey among family practitioners (FPs). The following three questions were addressed: What incentives make guidelines so attractive for FPs that they integrate them into their daily routine? What forms of training do family physicians prefer today and in the future? Does the delegation of tasks to appropriately trained medical assistants improve the organization of the team respectively the practice?
Methods: We conducted an exploratory cross-sectional survey during three family practitioners training programs in 2011. We used a self-designed standardized questionnaire with thematically grouped items. The sets of questions were developed by a consensus process within the quality improvement section of the DEGAM.
Results: Of the 500 participants 98 replied (response rate: 20 %). FPs categorise DEGAM guidelines as an important working tool, while guidelines of other scientific societies find less approval. Incentives for using the guidelines are scientific quality (84 %), availability of a short guideline version (86 %), guideline compliant training opportunities (73 %), moderated discussions in quality circles (71 %) and integration into practice management software (64 %). Financial incentives play a minor role. The delegation of tasks to appropriately trained medical assistants is considered time-saving by 85 %
Conclusions: The survey provides some data for a detailed study of the „user behaviour“ of the DEGAM guidelines and identifies factors inhibiting and promoting their implementation.