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Effective Clinical Practice

March/April 2001


Reducing Emergency Visits in Older Adults with Chronic Illness. A Randomized, Controlled Trial of Group Visits
Eric A. Coleman, Theresa B. Eilertsen, Andrew M. Kramer, David J. Magid, Arne Beck, and Doug Conner

In this study, monthly group visits for chronically ill older adults, which included health topic presentations, socializing, and one-on-one visits with a physician or nurse, were shown to significantly reduce emergency department and hospital utilization.
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Misleading Presentation of Breast Cancer in Popular Magazines
Wylie Burke, Amy H. Olsen, Linda E. Pinsky, Susan E. Reynolds, and Nancy A. Press

The typical breast cancer patient is consistently misrepresented in the lay press, which emphasizes cancer in young women. This presentation of breast cancer may contribute to women's fears of breast cancer and to overestimates of personal risk.
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Deferred Care for Adults with Musculoskeletal Complaints
Donna L. Washington, Paul G. Shekelle, and Carl D. Stevens

Musculoskeletal complaints account for a substantial proportion of emergency department visits, and many ambulatory care facilities do not have the facilities to offer same-day care to all walk-in patients. To reduce the patient load for such facilities, this study tested the use of guidelines to identify patients for which care could safely be deferred. Most patients agreed to a later appointment.
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The Case for Persuasive Health Messages
John K. Worden and Brian S. Flynn
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The Case for Letting Information Speak for Itself
Lisa M. Schwartz and Steven Woloshin

What is the primary job of health communicators? Is it to persuade people to adopt healthy behaviors or is it to inform people about what is known and let them make their own choices? This pair of commentaries explores both sides of this issue.
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Number Fifteen
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Assessing Hospital Quality: A Review for Clinicians
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Are We Overvaluing Performance Measures?
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Promoting Self-Referral for Advanced Imaging
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