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Review: case management programmes improve patient outcomes

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Question What are the effects of case management programmes on patient centred outcomes, healthcare resource use, and costs? Case management was defined as “a program that uses physician or nonphysician providers to maintain continuous contact with patients via telephone or in-home visits in order to prevent disease exacerbation through intensive assessment and education techniques.”

Data sources

English language studies were identified by searching Medline and HealthSTAR (1985–97) using the terms case management, patient care planning, patient-centered care, disease management, care management, and managed care programs. Bibliographies of relevant papers were also reviewed.

Study selection

Studies were selected if they were randomised controlled trials. Studies were excluded if they did not contain original data; did not include adult patients; or focused solely …

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  • Source of funding: not stated.

  • For correspondence: Dr J A Ferguson, Richard L Roudebush VAMC, HSR&D (11H), 1481 West 10th Street, Indianapolis, IN 46202, USA. Fax +1 317 554 0114.

  • A modified version of this abstract appears in ACP Journal Club 1998 Sept-Oct.