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Why do patients with Simple Mechanical Back Pain seek Urgent Care?

Authors
Journal
Physiotherapy
0031-9406
Publisher
Elsevier
Volume
100
Issue
1
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/j.physio.2013.08.001
Keywords
  • Back Pain
  • Care-Seeking
  • Urgent-Care
  • Qualitative Design
  • Primary Care
Disciplines
  • Education

Abstract

Abstract Objective To explore why patients with simple mechanical back pain seek urgent care. Design Qualitative Exploratory Inquiry based on the principles of Grounded Theory. Setting Urgent Care. Methods Data collection by semi-structured interview. Results The study identified eight key motivators of patients with mechanical back pain seeking urgent care: (1) GP access, (2) Pain, (3) Function, (4) Something being different, (5) Something being wrong, (6) Desire for investigation, (7) Third Party Influence and (8) Repeat visits. Conclusion This study provides some evidence to support the notion that patients are willing to use primary care services for the treatment of Simple Mechanical Back Pain but that access is frequently limited and untimely. The study concludes that inappropriate attendances at urgent care facilities are frequently a human response to perception of pain severity which is reinforced by functional loss, uncertainty, the need to provide care for others and the encouragement of others. While it is asserted that there is a clear need for mass education in this area, it is also speculated that attendance at urgent care may occur to overtly escalate the need for assistance and illustrate to sceptical significant others the severity of the condition.

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