Comprehensive primary health care and social determinants as top priorities

Mark R Nelson
Med J Aust 2014; 200 (2): . || doi: 10.5694/mja13.11095
Published online: 3 February 2014

To the Editor: I agree with Baum on the objective evidence of the good health of Australians and that there still is room for improvement in our primary health care system, but I think it is simplistic of her to characterise “fee-for-service general practice” as providing “episodic care”.1 The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners description of “person centred, continuing, comprehensive and coordinated wholeperson health care to individuals and families in their communities” seems to better represent what general practice does.2 While general practice does and needs to deal with acute episodes, more than half of problems managed in GP–patient encounters are chronic, and a significant amount of activity is preventive.3

  • Discipline of General Practice, University of Tasmania, Hobart, Tasmania.


Competing interests:

No relevant disclosures.


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