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May/June 2008 Annals of Family Medicine tip sheet
Date:5/12/2008

to multiple stakeholder groups may make them more likely to stand out in an environment of similar competing messages.

Physician Responses to a Community-Level Trial Promoting Judicious Antibiotic Use
By Christopher J. Stille, M.D., M.P.H., et al


Family Physician Urges Peers to Lead Health Care Reform Effort

Using patient stories, a family physician elucidates the magnitude of the U.S. health care crisis, describing problems at all levels of the system from financing structures to the current delivery system. Invoking the need for individual responsibility, she encourages fellow clinicians to be proactive and lead meaningful change.

The Unsustainable US. Health Care System: A Blueprint for Change
By Jennifer DeVoe, M.D., D.Phil.


Pictures Are More Powerful Than Words

When conveying important information about the benefits of a medication to patients, pictures appear to be more powerful than words. A study of 100 patients with cardiovascular disease finds that 57 percent prefer information about the risks and benefits of treatment be presented graphically. Other ways of expressing risk and benefit were less popular among study participants. Only 19 percent preferred information expressed as relative risk, 13 percent preferred absolute risk, 9 percent preferred natural frequencies, and only one patient preferred the information be presented in terms of an odds ratio. Notably, no patients preferred number needed to treat, a method for communicating risk and benefit that is very useful to clinicians. The authors assert that these findings support the need for the development of visual aids to support shared clinical decision making.

An accompanying editorial by Spiegelhalter highlights one of the essential elements of primary care living with uncertainty and explains why there is uncertainty both for doctors and patients. He explains that physicians attempts
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Contact: Angela Sharma
asharma@aafp.org
913-269-2269
American Academy of Family Physicians
Source:Eurekalert

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