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July 20, 1994

Family Medicine: Principles and Practice

Author Affiliations

University of California, San Diego School of Medicine

JAMA. 1994;272(3):245. doi:10.1001/jama.1994.03520030089042

This article is only available in the PDF format. Download the PDF to view the article, as well as its associated figures and tables.


To create a specialty textbook the editor must somehow come up with a single work that summarizes the essence of the specialty. In any specialty this is difficult, but in many ways the specialty of family practice, because of its breadth, makes this effort all the more challenging. In its fourth edition, Taylor's Family Medicine: Principles and Practice clearly rises to the challenge.

A textbook like this should be judged on its readability, including organization, comprehensiveness, and timeliness. A key element would be the quality of the authors and how well the book comes together as a unit despite having multiple authors. Dr Taylor has assembled a veritable Who's Who in family medicine with about 200 authors. However, the book maintains the feel of the work of a smaller group and is exquisite in its organization and presentation.

The text is divided into three parts. The first discusses the specialty

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