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September 22, 1993

Physicians and Family Caregivers: A Model for Partnership-Reply

JAMA. 1993;270(12):1427. doi:10.1001/jama.1993.03510120048028

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In Reply.  —We appreciate and commend the comments of Drs Fredman and Daly. They make a number of points with which we fully agree. It is clearly important for physicians to ask their patients whether they have sole or shared responsibility for the care of an older parent or relative. In our experience, the practice of traditional primary care physicians is characterized by their long-standing relationships with their patients; these relationships often provide the basis for knowing about caregiving responsibilities. However, in an era in which managed competition may come to cause significant realignments between patients and physicians, it will be important for primary care physicians to follow Fredman and Daly's advice that they seek information about their patients' caregiving responsibilities. The use of reliable instrumentation to determine a patient's needs for caregiving assistance in activities of daily living and instrumental activities of daily living makes great sense. It would