Doctor using tablet to inform patient

New General Practice Insights Report reveals most frequent reasons why patients visit GP

In Central Queensland, Sunshine Coast, Wide Bay by PHN Communications

A new report on general practice in Australia shows that the three most frequent reasons recorded as to why patients go to a doctor are to obtain a prescription, for review of their conditions, and for upper respiratory tract infections.

Professor Brendan Murphy (Chief Medical Officer of the Department of Health) said the General Practice Insights Report 2016-17 working paper showed that the top five chronic conditions patients presented with to general practitioners (GPs) were hypertension (high blood pressure), depression, dyslipidaemia (high cholesterol), anxiety and asthma.

“This working paper, which was commissioned from NPS MedicineWise by the Department of Health, examines MedicineInsight data from GPs’ own clinical software showing why patients went to GPs and how their conditions were managed,” Professor Murphy said.

“The findings were derived from completely de-identified information from 2.1 million patients who attended 475 general practices across Australia.

“The report shows that GPs most frequently prescribed penicillin, antidepressants, opioids and drugs for peptic ulcers and reflux. It also shows that 42 per cent of patients had at least one pathology test result recorded,” he said.