What Primary Care Docs Shouldn’t Be Doing

The National Physicians Alliance, an organization composed of 22,000 physicians, compiled a list of the top 5 don’ts for primary care that was reported in Tuesday’s NY Times .

That’s right- Five procedures you’re better of not having done. The Alliance’s aim is to increase the quality of primary care, while being good stewards of scarce medical resources, save money and reduce harms and risks. Since many doctors don’t keep up with the latest and greatest in medicine, unless it came from a pharmaceutical rep, I wanted to let you know what they are so you can question its usage if your doctor orders such tests:

1. Forgo antibiotics for sore throats in children.
2. Forgo CAT scans for mild head injuries in children.
3. Forgo bone density scans in women under the age of 65 and men under the age of 70 who are not at increased risk for osteoporosis.
4. Forgo basic blood tests for healthy adults, except to screen for high cholesterol and high blood glucose.
5. Forgo EKGs for healthy adults.

These procedures are, for the most part, unnecessary and they put you at risk for more unnecessary treatments. The more you know, the better your care!


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