Family Practitioners’ Views on Colorectal Cancer Screening
Ein Vergleich von hausärztlichen Forschungspraxen mit einer bundesweiten Zufallsstichprobegerman translation / full article
A Comparison of Research Practices with a Nationwide Sample of Family Practitioners
Background: Research practices enable health services research in a real family practice setting. The way family practitioners in these practices provide day-to-day care and their attitudes towards research topics may be influenced by their interest in science. Research practices may therefore be comparable to other approaches to family practice research to only a limited degree. On the basis of a study of colorectal cancer screening among patients with familial risk, we assessed possible differences in opinions on the usefulness of colorectal cancer screening and other characteristics between family practitioners (HA) from a nationwide sample and family practitioners in research practices (HA-FP).
Methods: Comparison of data from a sample taken from a nationwide survey of HA (n = 500) with the results of a survey of HA-FP from a network of research practices (n = 29) with regard to the topics: opinions on the usefulness of colorectal cancer screening, implementation in practice and other practice characteristics.
Results: 139 HA (28 %) and 29 HA-FP (100 %) took part in the study. Except for the duration of professional experience, practice characteristics did not differ considerably between the two groups. HA and HA-FP generally held similar views on the usefulness of colonoscopies and fecal occult blood tests without limitation to defined target groups. HA and HA-FP had partially differing opinions on the usefulness of colonoscopies for additionally considered target groups: HA more frequently viewed colonoscopies as “useful” for persons with a positive family history as well as for persons over the statutory eligibility age (55+) for an examination (99 vs. 79 % and 78 vs. 52 %). The recommendation to undertake a colonoscopy is more part of the daily routine for HA-FP than for HA (93 vs. 74 %).
Conclusions: There were small differences between HA and HA-FP in their opinions on the usefulness of screening colonoscopy for defined target groups. However, attitudes of participating doctors towards the subject of research and practice characteristics should therefore be recorded when conducting family practice research and discussed when analyzing study results.