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SMAs are also an argument between doctors, some may feel they are violating confidentiality agreements (Stempniak) and others may think SMAs are a great way to provide care to people. A consultant that has been preforming this kind of service said, “ ‘this is one of the few ways doctors can be more efficient and patients get more care, not less’ “(Dembner 2). These appointments benefit not only doctors but also the patients by giving them the opportunity to have a learning experienced from one another. Neuwirth, a chief medical officer said this program “‘becomes a big part of your life, and no one else really understands what you’re going through except someone else who is also going through it’ “(Stempniak). Listening to what other people are going through, encourages them to be better and, what to avoid in getting better.
Investigations have been done to prove how effective shared medical appointments are and what the advantages of conducting them. Among those who try SMAs, about 85% don’t go back to individual exams (Park 1). One of the major concerns about this type of appointment is the patient’s acceptance of it (Sikon and Broson). First time patients might feel intimidated by the amount of people in the room or maybe they just do not feel comfortable sharing their personal issues with strangers. Most of these insecurities go away after they start interacting with other people and helping each other with the experience they had on.
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Doctors are primarily offering groups visits for patients with common chronic illness such as diabetes, arthritis, fertility problems, and lung disease (Dembner 1). SMAs are also offered to seniors that because of their age do not have access to the Internet, and sometimes are not aware of what is going on. Group appointments will provide them with lots of information on how to treat their illness. Additionally, patients who agree to the group format, typically get quicker access and more time with the doctor, and a chance to learn how others are managing their illness (Dembner 1).
With a better understanding of what shared medical appointments consist of, and what the advantages are of joining them. People may start thinking of a new way of going to the doctor. Not only you go to the doctor for checkups, but you are also given the opportunity to interact and learn from other patients. Privacy is not a concern in these kinds of appointments, doctors and patients are asked to sign a confidentiality agreement and patients have the privilege to see the doctor one-one anytime during the group sessions. SMAs are a quicker, cheaper, and beneficial way of going to the doctors and are guaranteed to stay around for a long time.