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April 1987

Annual Meeting of the Ambulatory Pediatric Association

Am J Dis Child. 1987;141(4):367-393. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1987.04460040025002

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Counseling Adolescents: Practices of Pediatricians vs Internists and Family Practitioners  A. Joffe, S. M. Radius, M. GallDepartment of Pediatrics, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, BaltimoreSince adolescence is a period of increasing personal responsibility for one's health, counseling by physicians is critical to adolescents' informed health care decision making. Questionnaires were completed by 362 entering college freshmen regarding health counseling before college. Pediatricians served 36.8% of the respondents; all others were treated by internists (11%) and family/general practitioners (43.9%). Pediatricians offered significantly less counseling than internists on smoking, heart disease prevention (P<.01), alcohol, and other drugs (P<.05); they exceeded internists in none of the 15 topics surveyed. In contrast, pediatricians offered significantly more counseling than family/general practitioners regarding weight control (P<.0001) and nutrition (P<.01); no other significant differences emerged between family/general practitioners and pediatricians. In ten of 15 areas, 75% to

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