Real-world care vs guidelines: Experts spar over whether doctors are failing patients

Two experts give their views on the Care Track results

A major study caused ructions last week when it suggested that only 60% of real-world care for common child health conditions — such as otitis media, tonsillitis and asthma — adheres to clinical practice guidelines. (If you missed the story, you can read all about it here)

Predictably, it triggered heated debate among doctors about the value of guidelines as a measure of quality care.

Here, Professor Chris Del Mar, a Gold Coast GP and Cochrane reviewer, gives his assessment of the Care Track study, which assessed the medical records of nearly 6700 children treated by GPs, paediatricians and emergency department against guidelines for 17 common paediatric conditions.

Further down, the academic who led the research — Professor Jeffrey Braithwaite