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Improved physician-patient relationships are associated with improved health

September 15, 2020

This study found an association between improved physician-patient relationships and improved patient-reported health status. Researchers at Case Western Reserve University found over a one-year period that while consistent access to a provider is important, the quality of each clinical encounter is equally as important in shaping a patient's reported overall health outcomes, as measured by the SF-12 quality of life questionnaire.

The authors also found some evidence that adults with five or more diagnosed conditions experience physician-patient relationships that are significantly lower in quality than those reported by adults without multimorbidity. This discrepancy may reflect unmet physician-patient relationship needs among adults bearing multimorbidity burdens and indicate another opportunity for intervention. The study findings can potentially inform health care strategies and health policy aimed at improving patient-centered health outcomes.
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Assessing the Longitudinal Impact of Physician-Patient Relationship on Functional Health
R. Henry Olaisen, MPH, PhD, et al
Case Western Reserve University, Department of Population and Quantitative Health Sciences, Cleveland, Ohio
https://www.annfammed.org/content/18/5/422

American Academy of Family Physicians

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