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An Med Interna 25:213-221. Published in Spanish.
Badalona Serveis Assistencials S.A., Barcelona, Spain
OBJECTIVES: To determine the general referral and neurological rate per center and the adjusted efficiency indexes, through the retrospective implementation of the Adjusted Clinical Groups (ACG) in a primary care setting.
PATIENTS AND METHODS: To design multicenter retrospective study. Attended patients by five primary care teams (PCT) during the year 2006 were included. The main measurements were general parameters, age, gender, dependent (visits and episodes) and morbidity of each patient relative to each ACG. The referral rate was defined as the quotient between the number of referrals and the visits made. Efficiency Index (EI) was established dividing the observed by the expected referrals obtained by indirect standardization. Statistical significance, p < 0.05.
RESULTS: Studied patients 80775 (use: 72.4%), 4.8 +/- 3.5 episodes and 7.9 +/- 8.2 visits/patient/year. Percentage of visits with a referral was 9.0% (confidence interval [CI]: 8.8-9.2); age: 44.8 +/- 22.8 years (women: 54.6%), p = 0.000. The average of referrals was of 70.5 per 100 attended-patients/year (p = 0.000) 2.5% referrals of the total were made to the neurological, being patient of greater age, with predominance of women and displaying the head pain/migraine as main consultation reason. Visits and episodes explain 43.2%-73.9% respectively (p = 0.000), the explanatory power of the classification’s variability was of 46.3% (p = 0.0001) and the referral 20.1%. EI per center were: 0.97 (CI: 0.77-1.18), 0.79 (CI: 0.57-1.01), 0.88 (CI: 0.62-1.14), 1.29 (CI: 0.94-1.65) and 0.91 (CI: 0.58-1.25), p = 0.023 (family practice) and 0.90 (CI: 0.47-1.33), 0.78 (CI: 0.35-1.21), 0.93 (CI: 0.43-1.44), 1.21 (CI: 0.60-1.82) and 0.97 (CI: 0.39-1.56), p = 0.031 (pediatrics); respectively.
CONCLUSIONS: Adjusted morbidity by ACG explains an important part of the referrals variability. A low percentage was derived to neurology. The study results must be interpreted cautiously even after adjustment by age, gender and morbidity. Should the results be confirmed it would allow an improvement in the measurement of referrals for clinical management in the PCT.
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