Soliciting additional concerns in the primary care consultation and the utility of a brief communication intervention to aid solicitation: A qualitative study

Summers, Rachael H., Moore, Michael, Ekberg, Stuart, Chew-Graham, Carolyn A., Little, Paul, Stevenson, Fiona, Brindle, Lucy, & Leydon, Geraldine M. (2016) Soliciting additional concerns in the primary care consultation and the utility of a brief communication intervention to aid solicitation: A qualitative study. Patient Education and Counseling, 99(5), pp. 724-732.

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  • To investigate the perspectives of general practitioners (GPs) on the practice of soliciting additional concerns (ACs) and the acceptability and utility of two brief interventions (prompts) designed to aid the solicitation.


  • Eighteen GPs participating in a feasibility randomised controlled trial were interviewed. Interviews were semi-structured and audio-recorded. Data were analysed using a Framework Approach.


  • Participants perceived eliciting ACs as important for: reducing the need for multiple visits, identifying serious illness early, and increasing patient and GP satisfaction. GPs found the prompts easy to use and some continued their use after the study had ended to aid time management. Others noted similarities between the intervention and their usual practice. Nevertheless, soliciting ACs in every consultation was not unanimously supported.


  • The prompts were acceptable to GPs within a trial context, but there was disagreement as to whether ACs should be solicited routinely. Some GPs considered the intervention to aid their prioritisation efficiency within consultations.

Practice implications

  • Some GPs will find prompts which encourage ACs to be solicited early in the consultation enable them to better organise priorities and manage time-limited consultations more effectively.

Impact and interest:

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ID Code: 91197
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: General Practice, Primary Care, Soliciting Patient Concern, Doctor-Patient Communication, Qualitative Interviews
DOI: 10.1016/j.pec.2015.12.005
ISSN: 1873-5134
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > PUBLIC HEALTH AND HEALTH SERVICES (111700) > Primary Health Care (111717)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > LANGUAGES COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE (200000) > COMMUNICATION AND MEDIA STUDIES (200100) > Communication Studies (200101)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Nursing
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2015 Elsevier
Deposited On: 13 Dec 2015 23:31
Last Modified: 31 May 2016 00:41

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