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Are Aspects of Family Medicine Relevant for Family Physicians in the City?

DOI: 10.3238/zfa.2020.0153-0158

german translation / full article

Vera Kalitzkus, Annbirte Koch, Stefan Wilm

Keywords: family medicine general practice primary health care

Background Based on the working definition of “family medicine in primary care“, this study examines how important family doctors in large cities consider selected aspects of the working definition for their practice. Methods A postal survey of family physicians in the metropolitan area of North Rhine-Westphalia was carried out. The questionnaire concentrates on the aspects “characteristic working methods“, “characteristic approaches“ and the question of cooperation partners. The analysis was conducted with the help of Excel, using descriptive statistics and a content analysis of the free text answers. Results A response rate of almost 30 % resulted in 321 questionnaires that could be evaluated. The socio-demographic data of the study group predominantly correspond to the profile of family physicians in the metropolitan area of North Rhine-Westphalia. The result of the survey on the practical relevance of aspects from the working definition “family medicine in family medicine“ shows a high degree of agreement (ten out of twelve items) with the working definition developed by an expert committee. Almost all interviewees (99 %) appreciated the extended family history as important (28 %) or very important (71 %) for their practice as family physician. Conclusions The study shows that the practical relevance of family medicine aspects felt by family physicians in the metropolitan area of North Rhine-Westphalia is very much in line with the working definition of “family medicine in primary care“. Only the importance of social institutions (e.g. public health institutions, youth welfare services or self help groups) and child and youth psychiatry as cooperation partners is rated lower. Further investigations are necessary for rural areas as well as for areas with different cultural backgrounds. Keywordsfamily medicine; general practice; primary health care


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