[Consulting the nursing home physician; an interesting but less used option].


OBJECTIVE To describe the current use of the consultation function of nursing home physicians. Setting Descriptive inventory study. METHODS A questionnaire (with 16 questions regarding the consultation function of nursing home physicians) was sent to the head of the medical staff of all nursing homes in The Netherlands (n=323). RESULTS The response to the questionnaire was 78%. The use of the consultation function appeared to be very low. Only 20% of respondents answered that their medical staff was involved in weekly or monthly consultations upon request of general practitioners. Respondents mentioned unfamiliarity with the expertise of nursing home physicians as the main reason for this low consultation frequency. A positive relationship was found between the consultation frequency and some organizational parameters. CONCLUSION Nursing home physicians are not often consulted by general practitioners. Compared to 7 years ago even a decline in the consultation frequency has occurred. Paradoxically, the current trend in chronic care to offer care and treatment as long as possible in the home situation of patients, leads to a situation in which Dutch nursing homes offer more and more complementary nursing and medical support to community care for chronically ill and disabled patients, still living at home. This trend stresses also the importance of more collaboration between general practitioners and nursing home physicians. Further research concerning the added value of this collaboration is necessary

Cite this paper

@article{Isselt2007ConsultingTN, title={[Consulting the nursing home physician; an interesting but less used option].}, author={El{\'e}onore F van Dam van Isselt and Jos M. G. A. Schols}, journal={Tijdschrift voor gerontologie en geriatrie}, year={2007}, volume={38 5}, pages={255-61} }