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Logo of jroyalcgpracBJGP at RCGPBJGP at PubMed CentralJ R Coll Gen Pract at PubMed CentralRCGP homepage
J R Coll Gen Pract. 1977 September; 27(182): 552–555.
PMCID: PMC2158486

The length of consultations in general practice


Four characteristics of patients which might affect the length of time spent in consultations in general practice were studied: the sex, diagnosis, age, and social class of the patient. The sex of the patient was not shown to be significantly associated with any difference. The diagnosis of `psychoneurotic' conditions was significantly associated with long consultations (p < 0·001) and this is discussed.

The number of consultations lasting less than the median time for the whole series was significantly more common in the 15 to 29 age group.

There have been few reports published on this topic, which seems important, and I hope further work will examine this aspect of the work patterns of established and trainee general practitioners.

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Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • Floyd CB, Livesey A. Self-observation in general practice--the bleep method. J R Coll Gen Pract. 1975 Jun;25(155):425–431. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Fry J. James Mackenzie lecture. Common sense and uncommon sensibility. J R Coll Gen Pract. 1977 Jan;27(166):9–17. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Macdonald A, McLean IG. Study of the work of general practitioners. Practitioner. 1971 Nov;207(241):680–688. [PubMed]
  • McGregor RM. The work of a family doctor. J R Coll Gen Pract. 1973 Nov;23(136):787–791. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Morrell DC, Gage HG, Robinson NA. Patterns of demand in general practice. J R Coll Gen Pract. 1970 Jun;19(95):331–342. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Richardson IM, Howie JG, Durno D, Gill G, Dingwall-Fordyce I. A study of general-practitioner consultations in North-east Scotland. J R Coll Gen Pract. 1973 Feb;23(127):132–142. [PMC free article] [PubMed]

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