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February 28, 1977

Multiphasic Screening: Case-Finding Tool in a Teaching Hospital Medical Clinic

Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Experimental Medicine and Epidemiology and Health (Drs S. Fletcher and R. Fletcher), McGill University and the McGill University Clinic, Royal Victoria Hospital, Montreal, and McGill Faculty of Medicine, Montreal (Ms Sourkes and Rabzel).

JAMA. 1977;237(9):887-891. doi:10.1001/jama.1977.03270360049018

Multiphasic screening as a case-finding tool was evaluated in a randomized, controlled study. For each of 112 physicians, a patient was assigned to one of three groups: multiphasic screening group (SG), chart abstract group (AG), or chart review group (RG). Medical problem lists constructed before and after receiving additional information were compared.

Physicians for 36 SG patients identified considerably more new medical problems, both total (77) and ones they considered important (25), than 40 AG physicians (14 and 8) and 36 RG physicians (4 and 0). One year later, 38 of the 95 newly identified problems had been acted on, 31 in the SG. Medical care was affected in nine patients: six in SG, two in AG, and one in RG. Multiphasic screening may help physicians identify new medical problems in clinic patients.

(JAMA 237:887-891, 1977)