Do prescriptions adversely affect doctor-patient interactions?

S. A. Wartman, L. L. Morlock, F. E. Malitz, E. Palm

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The purpose of this study was to assess the impact of the prescription on the doctor-patient interaction. Data were collected during ongoing quality assessment studies at a prepaid group practice of about 19,000 enrollees. Adult patients and their providers completed forms on all visits to the Department of Medicine and Urgent Care Center during a two-week period. A 50% random sample of patients was interviewed by telephone one week after the index visit. Patients who did not receive precriptions reported more satisfaction with the communicative aspects of their visits to physicians than patients who did receive prescriptions. We suggest that prescriptions may hinder patient satisfaction with the doctor-patient interaction by substituting for other, more 'meaningful' communication between patient and provider.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1358-1361
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican journal of public health
Issue number12
StatePublished - 1981
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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