The Art of Teaching Primary Care Physicians
Rheumatologic diseases represent a growing health crisis. Primary care physicians encounter a significant number of rheumatologic problems in the course of practice. Millions of work days are lost per year due to osteoarthritis, low back pain and rheumatoid arthritis. The morbidity of arthropathies results in numerous hospitalizations annually. Given the sheer number of patients, primary care physicians cannot rely on referral to rheumatologists to identify, diagnose and manage this growing health need. The general practitioners are an integral part of the healthcare team that needs to recognize the importance of early diagnosis, treatment and holistic care of the patients presenting with musculoskeletal problems. As part of a comprehensive treatment plan, primary care physicians need competency in assessing the patient and understanding the disease and on how to participate in the treatment plan through self-management skills. This will be achieved through a general practitioner-targeted teaching programme. This chapter will discuss why teaching rheumatology in primary care is important, the primary care need, who to teach and what needs to be done. The chapter will then discuss the art of primary care physicians teaching, clinical tips for primary care physicians to use in their standard clinical practice and how can we improve education in the primary care.
KeywordsTeaching primary care physicians Primary care education Rheumatology education Continuous medical education Appraisal of teaching primary care
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