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January 1972

Community Medicine as an Academic Discipline: Fact or Fancy?

Author Affiliations


From the Department of Medicine, University of Texas, Southwestern Medical School, Dallas, and the Harvard Center for Community Health and Medical Care, Boston.

Arch Intern Med. 1972;129(1):124-128. doi:10.1001/archinte.1972.00320010128019

American medical schools are increasingly becoming formally involved in the delivery of health care, usually under the structure of departments of community medicine. Views of the role of the medical school in this area range from a desire for a great deal of involvement to one for very little involvement. A number of impressions were gained during a six-month study involving visitations to 18 schools. Present outpatient clinic facilities should be utilized to both teach and provide comprehensive care. The apparent conservatism of the position presented is based upon the author's belief that medical schools should not attempt to provide services which they cannot do well at a sacrifice of their prime responsibilities, teaching and research.