Assessing Information Needs for a Quality Patient-Centered Referral


Coordination of referrals between primary care physicians and specialists is a critical aspect of patient care. Focusing on five chronic health conditions that each require a great deal of coordination, this Picker Program Grant would identify the specific information requirements of patients and doctors throughout the referral process. Researchers would examine the extent to which each group's needs might differ according to patients' diagnosis, health status, and sociodemographic characteristics. They would also develop specific recommendations for promoting effective communication among a patient's doctors. The second part of the project would produce and validate a survey instrument that could be used nationally to assess patients' experience with the referral process. By surveying patients in a closed provider network in an urban area and an open network serving rural residents, project staff would also obtain new information on how different health care settings can affect the referral experience.

Grant Details

Grantee Organization:
University of Kentucky Research Foundation
Principal Investigator:
Carol Ireson, Ph.D., and Douglas Scutchfield, M.D.
Award Amount:
Approval Date:
April 9, 2002

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