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March 14, 1966

A New Role for the General Practitioner

JAMA. 1966;195(11):971. doi:10.1001/jama.1966.03100110139051

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To the Editor:—  I should like to suggest a future role for the general practitioner in medicine.The medical training of the future GP might be coordinated into a program leading to the PhD as well as the MD degree. Thus the generalist will enter medical practice with competence in the basic as well as the clinical sciences. While the specialties will always require specialized research capabilities, the broad range of the common diseases properly falls into the generalist's area. Nobody else is better equipped to know what the problems are, where the most need for research exists, and how useful the results of research become. The academician tends to cover his experimental results with a patina of theoretical significance and promise, but the generalist will know through clinical experience the practical merit of his investigations.With the proper motivation and training, the generalist will be able to find the

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