[Skip to Content]
[Skip to Content Landing]
March 22, 1985

Community-Oriented Primary Care in the United StatesA Status Report

Author Affiliations

From the Institute of Medicine, Washington, DC (Dr Nutting and Ms Conner), and the Department of Family Medicine, Medical College of Virginia, Richmond (Dr Wood). Dr Nutting is currently the Director of the Office of Primary Care Studies, Health Resources and Services Administration, Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, DC.

JAMA. 1985;253(12):1763-1766. doi:10.1001/jama.1985.03350360089025

Community-oriented primary care (COPC) is a variation on the primary care model, which is characterized by the complementary use of epidemiologic and primary care skills to systematically address the health care needs of a defined population. A study by the Institute of Medicine developed an operational model of COPC and examined its feasibility under differing organizational and financial arrangements. Although COPC is usually associated with publicly funded programs for underserved populations, the study demonstrated its presence in the private sector as well. However, the financial structure of the practice remains a critical factor determining the particular expression of the model. The study points to the need for data describing the marginal cost and health impact of COPC, if this promising innovation is to become an important form of primary care practice.

(JAMA 1985;253:1763-1766)