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BLOG: Do we really need primary care academics?

A blog by Gene Feder, GP and Professor of Primary Care

18 May 2015

I recently took part in a debate hosted by the Centre for Primary Care and Public Health (QMUL) where I argued that the future quality of the NHS depends on academic primary care.

The vote at the start of the debate: in favour 16, against 11, abstaining 2.

My pitch was based on the challenges of developing integrated health (and social care) for our aging population, a patient-centred shared decision-making model of medical practice, and turning back the commercially (and specialist) driven tide of over-diagnosis and over-treatment. The future quality of the NHS requires those challenges to be met and will depend on a vigorous primary care-based system. And that will (in part) depend on the work of primary care academics. I reminded the audience that I was using the term “academic” to mean having to do with education and research, not its other definition: “unpractical”.

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