The gap between the best possible care and the healthcare that is actually delivered remains quite large despite an increased focus on evidence-based practice guidelines, according to a report in the June 27 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine. Using data from the National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey and the National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey, researchers at Stanford University School of Medicine found that the percentage of patient visits receiving appropriate care improved significantly from 1992 to 2002 for only six of 23 quality indicators. Some other categories showed what the researchers called "modest" improvement. There is a commonly held belief that it takes 17 years for medical practices to go from research to widespread practice, said the report's co-author, Jun Ma, and the study's findings lend evidence to this theory. View the study abstract. -- by Andis Robeznieks
Gap persists between best care knowledge and use
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