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John Hamilton, as editor of this book, has compiled an interesting and informative history of the American Psychiatric Association's (APA) endeavors to develop psychiatric peer review. Much of the work was done with the Civilian Health and Medical Program for the Uniformed Services (CHAMPUS), and the story of the relationship between the APA and CHAMPUS is worthwhile to understand the fusion of a professional society whose primary purpose is to ensure quality of care and a third-party payer whose primary purpose is to control costs of care. This book demonstrates that both goals can be achieved through a trust and respect for each other.
So many psychiatrists are suspicious of the motives of third-party payers and are afraid of peer review being abused by third-party payers. This book largely answers these concerns and goes a long way toward reassuring the psychiatrist that peer review is an educational learning experience for
Wells LD. Psychiatric Peer Review: Prelude and Promise. JAMA. 1987;257(2):253. doi:10.1001/jama.1987.03390020119045