Co-locating specialty and primary care

Added May 7, 2020

Citation: Elrashidi MY, Mohammed K, Bora PR, et al. Co-located specialty care within primary care practice settings: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Healthcare 2018; 6(1): 52-66

Free to view: No

What is this? The COVID-19 pandemic is placing a strain on healthcare services. Existing research on co-locating specialist clinicians in primary care facilities may provide information to help policy makers with this.

In this systematic review, the authors searched for randomized trials and observational studies that evaluated the outcomes of co-locating specialty care within primary care settings. They did their search in February 2015. They identified 5 individually randomized trials, 4 cluster randomized trials and 13 observational studies. Most (14 of 22) studies were conducted in the USA. The specialty services that were studied were behavioral health (15 studies), cardiology (1), diabetes care (3), geriatrics (1), and infectious disease (1) and nephrology (1). Overall, the risk of bias in the included studies was judged to be moderate to high.

What was found: Co-locating specialty care in primary care settings increased patient and primary care provider satisfaction, and quality of life.

Co-locating specialty care in primary care settings increased outpatient visits, reduced appointment wait time and reduced costs.

In general and for some specialties, the impact of co-locating specialty care in primary care settings on clinical outcomes is uncertain.


Disclaimer: This summary has been written by staff and volunteers of Evidence Aid in order to make the content of the original document accessible to decision makers who are searching for the available evidence on the coronavirus (COVID-19) but may not have the time, initially, to read the original report in full. This summary is not intended as a substitute for the medical advice of physicians, other health workers, professional associations, guideline developers, or national governments and international agencies. If readers of this summary think that the evidence that is presented within it is relevant to their decision-making they should refer to the content and details of the original article, and the advice and guidelines offered by other sources of expertise, before making decisions. Evidence Aid cannot be held responsible for any decisions made about the coronavirus (COVID-19) on the basis of this summary alone.