Research Article

Effect of computer use in the consultation on the delivery of care.

Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1985; 291 doi: (Published 07 September 1985) Cite this as: Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1985;291:639
  1. G Brownbridge,
  2. A Evans,
  3. T Wall


    The effects of the use of a computer on the delivery of care in consultations in general practice were examined. In this trial a computer system provided for the review and update of patients' medical histories, notes on doctor-patient contacts, and information on repeat prescribing. Thirty consultations in which the computer system was used and 30 consultations in which no computer was used were matched individually for the doctor consulted, the sex and age of the patient, and the presenting problem(s). Six independent general practitioners blind rated each consultation for the standard of care attained. A minor negative effect of computer use on the doctors' clinical performance was found. We suggest, however, that this small effect would disappear if a computer system was used routinely.