Substitution of Hospital Care with Primary Care: Defining the Conditions of Primary Care Plus

Sofie Johanna Maria van Hoof*, Marielle Elisabeth Aafje Lydia Kroese, Marieke Dingena Spreeuwenberg, Arianne Mathilda Josephus Elissen, Ronald Johan Meerlo, Monique Margaretha Henreitte Hanraets, Dirk Ruwaard

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Objective: To analyse barriers and facilitators in substituting hospital care with primary care to define preconditions for successful implementation. Methods: A descriptive feasibility study was performed to collect information on the feasibility of substituting hospital care with primary care. General practitioners were able to refer patients, about whom they had doubts regarding diagnosis, treatment and/or the need to refer to hospital care, to medical specialists who performed low-complex consultations at general practitioner practices. Qualitative data were collected through interviews with general practitioners and medical specialists, focus groups and notes from meetings in the Netherlands between April 2013 and January 2014. Data were analysed using a conventional content analysis which resulted in categorised barriers, facilitators and policy adjustments, after which preconditions were formulated. Results: The most important preconditions were make arrangements on governmental level, arrange a collective integrated IT-system, determine the appropriate profile for medical specialists, design a referral protocol for eligible patients, arrange deliberation possibilities for general practitioners and medical specialists and formulate a diagnostic protocol. Conclusions: The barriers, facilitators and formulated preconditions provided relevant input to change the design of substituting hospital care with primary care.
Original languageEnglish
Article number12
JournalInternational Journal of Integrated Care
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • Substitution
  • primary care
  • hospital care
  • preconditions


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