Specialty Societies and Breast Cancer Screening Recommendations--Reply

Published in: JAMA Internal Medicine, v.177, no. 12, December 2017, p. 1872. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2017.4932

Posted on RAND.org on January 24, 2018

by Archana Radhakrishnan, Andrew M. Parker, Craig Pollack

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In additional analyses of our data, we found that gynecologists were more likely than internists or family medicine/general practitioners to endorse trusting guidelines by the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) (73%, 8%, and 19%, respectively). The corollary of this is that 15% of gynecologists reported trusting other guidelines for their breast cancer screening recommendations (with another 10% reporting not knowing or not having a preference). Similarly, there was variation between internists and family medicine/general practitioners among the proportion who trusted guidelines from the US Preventive Services Task Force and the American Cancer Society. This suggests that while physician specialty is critically linked to trusted guidelines, they are not in lockstep. Physicians likely gravitate toward guidelines that reflect not only their specialty but also their values, attitudes, and beliefs about cancer screening.

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