Improving Communication Between Providers

July-August 2021

doctors talking

In 2020, L.A. Care surveyed Primary Care Physicians (PCPs) and Specialty Care Physicians (SCPs) about the adequacy of sharing clinical information.

PCPs and SCPs felt their communication with one another was lacking and provided feedback on helpful ways to improve it.

These barriers in communication affect our patients’ overall health by impacting coordination of medical or behavioral services, delay in service and/or duplicative testing.

Common Recommendations

  • Ensure all clinical documents for referral include rationale for visit, pertinent examination findings, diagnosis or impression, treatment details, future recommendations and any further relevant information.
  • Send consultation notes immediately after seeing the patient.
  • Discuss with your patients the reason for the specialty care referral and steps to take if there are any further questions, for example difficulty in scheduling an appointment.
  • Reduce time spent on hold when providers call other offices with updates.