A ‘Model’ for the General Practice Consultation
The general practitioner (GP)-patient interaction is recognised as the cardinal feature of general practice. It is accepted that ‘what happens between doctor and patient’ is central to all the characteristics of the discipline. There is clarity about the problems that may emerge from the interaction, (eg. physical, psychological, social, familial, continuing and fragmentary), and the opportunities that these offer for different types of care and interaction, particularly on a continuing basis. There is also some consensus on the way the GP responds and acts on defined problems by means of the problem-solving method. Little unanimity exists, however, on the clinical method a GP uses while searching for and identifying these problems. In fact, it is well recognised that GPs vary markedly in their approach to patients.
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