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News - Evidence that continuity of care is a matter of life and death

Date: 29/06/2018

VoxDocs Release from the Family Doctor Association 29.06.18

Research shows that seeing the same doctor is a matter of life and death.

“The importance of continuity of care to patients and health systems has been proven yet again.” said Dr Peter Swinyard, National Chairman.

Continuity of care matters and is valued by both doctor and patient. We know from both international and national evidence that it reduces commissioned healthcare costs- by a scale that knocks most, if not all, of our other endeavours into a cocked hat! Less prescribing, less referring and fewer unplanned A&E attendances and admissions. Now we know it reduces mortality too.

We have a professional responsibility to promote continuity of care and keep it alive when many think they can reduce medicine and care down to impersonal interactions delivered to an "industrial scale".

There has never been a better example of throwing the baby out and being left with the bathwater as the NHS is currently courting at scale and pace. Our Patients, Public, Clinicians and Carers, need and deserve better."

The publication today of the research paper, headed by the General Practice Guru of Continuity of Care, Sir Denis Pereira Gray, shows that there is a relationship between the receipt of continuity of doctor care and mortality.

This paper adds to an increasing body of national and international evidence that continuity of care is associated with increased patient satisfaction, increased take-up of health promotion, greater adherence to medical advice and decreased use of hospital services.

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