The use of clinical practice guidelines in primary care: professional mindlines and control mechanisms = El uso de guías de práctica clínica en atención primaria: entre el conocimiento tácito y los mecanismos de control

Gené Badia, Joan
Gallo, Pedro
Caïs, Jordi
Sánchez, Emília
Arroyo, Liliana
Aymerich, Marta
Objective To identify the relevant barriers and enablers perceived by primary care professionals in implementing the recommendations of clinical practice guidelines (CPG). Methods Two focus groups were conducted with primary care physicians and nurses in Catalonia (Spain) between October and December 2012. Thirty-nine health professionals were selected based on their knowledge and daily use of CPG. Finally, eight general practitioners and eight nurses were included in the discussion groups. Participants were asked to share their views and beliefs on the accessibility of CPG, their knowledge and use of these documents, the content and format of CPG, dissemination strategy, training, professional-patient relationship, and the use of CPG by the management structure. We recorded and transcribed the content verbatim and analysed the data using qualitative analysis techniques. Results Physicians believed that, overall, CPG were of little practical use and frequently referred to them as a largely bureaucratic management control instrument that threatened their professional autonomy. In contrast, nurses believed that CPG were rather helpful tools in their day-to-day practice, although they would like them to be more sensitive to the current role of nurses. Both groups believed that CPG did not provide a response to most of the decisions they faced in the primary care setting. Conclusions Compliance with CPG recommendations would be improved if these documents were brief, non-compulsory, not cost-containment oriented, more based on nursing care models, sensitive to the specific needs of primary care patients, and integrated into the computer workstation ​
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