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April 5, 2000

Reasons Physicians Do Not Follow Clinical Practice Guidelines

Author Affiliations

Phil B.FontanarosaMD, Deputy EditorIndividualAuthorStephen J.LurieMD, PhD, Fishbein FellowIndividualAuthor


Copyright 2000 American Medical Association. All Rights Reserved. Applicable FARS/DFARS Restrictions Apply to Government Use.2000

JAMA. 2000;283(13):1685-1686. doi:10.1001/jama.283.13.1685

To the Editor: Dr Cabana and colleagues1 ignore an important barrier to following clinical practice guidelines; most are simply not concise enough. Instead of or perhaps in addition to a 40- or 50-page discussion of all contingencies in the management of a particular disease, why can't there be a 1-page summary saying in effect, "In general, these measures are recognized as essential, these others should be considered, and this group has been found ineffective or contraindicated." Practicing physicians need a checklist to carry in our heads if we are to change our habits. That is what a guideline should be.

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