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Nurses Can Resolve Low Complexity, Primary Care Cases

Spanish study finds patients have comparable relief to care provided by general practitioners

MONDAY, March 25 (HealthDay News) -- Nurses can comparably solve acute, low complexity health problems with similar results to general practitioners, according to a study published online March 21 in the Journal of Advanced Nursing.

Begoña Iglesias, M.D., from Consorci de Serveis a les Persones in Barcelona, Spain, and colleagues randomized adult patients requesting a same day consultation to an intervention group (753 patients seen by nurses trained to respond to low complexity problems) or a control group (708 patients seen by a general practitioner) in 38 primary care practices.

The researchers found that nurses successfully resolved 86.3 percent of the cases. There were no differences in resolution of symptoms or patient satisfaction between the groups.

"Nurses trained specifically to resolve acute health problems of low complexity give comparable quality of care to that provided by general practitioners in terms of resolution of the problem 15 days after the visit and in patient satisfaction with the visit," the authors write.

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