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Triage in primary care

Last reviewed dd mmm yyyy. Last edited dd mmm yyyy

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Triage evolved from the military procedure of giving priority to injured soldiers who were expected to benefit the most from medical care.

In accident and emergency departments and general practice co-operatives the philosophy can be extended to directing patients to the most appropriate type of care.

In some cases specific accident and emergency guidelines suggest problems which should be refused care.

Among a random sample of patients presenting to an accident and emergency department, primary care physicians provided a less costly non-emergency ambulatory care than did emergency physicians.

Telephone consultation appears to reduce the number of surgery contacts and out-of-hours visits by general practitioners (3)

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