Has the time come to adopt consultation time as a new technology for "the basket"? A literature review of the relations between consultation duration and consultation quality in primary care

Yael Landau, Shlomo Vinker*, Michal Shani, Sasson Nakar

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

Consultation time is an important resource in primary care, and it is important to understand whether a longer consultation results in better outcomes in morbidity and mortality, and patients' and physicians' satisfaction. Patients' visits may last from 2-3 minutes up to 30 minutes for similar medical problems. The increasing demands from the primary care physician in preventive medicine, complicated care and mental health, have led physicians to feel that the length of time for consultations were insufficient to fulfill these demands. The literature review conducted revealed two forms of research: observational studies where the research examined the relation between consultation length and various outcomes, and intervention studies where different consultation length were compared in order to assess their outcome. The studies are presented in this review according to the parameters that were examined: patients' and doctors' satisfaction, physician stress during the consultation, patients' recurrent visits, diagnosis of depression and psychological problems by the physician, preventive medicine and life style recommendation during consultation, diagnosis and treatment of acute and chronic diseases by the physician, utilization of resources such as prescription number, lab tests and referral to specialists by the physician.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1016-1020
Number of pages5
JournalHarefuah
Volume147
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2008

Keywords

  • Consultation duration
  • Consultation quality
  • Family physician
  • Patient satisfaction
  • Primary care

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