Guidelines and flowcharts


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Fam Pract Manag. 1999 Jul-Aug;6(7):9.

To the Editor:

As a family practice educator with an interest in clinical guidelines — used both as teaching tools and in clinical settings — I enjoyed the guidelines article [“Where to Look for Good Clinical Policies,” February 1999]. I would suggest using graphic-based information, such as flowcharts, algorithms and process maps, to communicate guidelines. They help to prioritize questions, portray knowledge in a more orderly fashion and force users to confront the tough issues that guidelines can raise.

The World Wide Web, in particular, has reinforced the value of a graphically based, point-and-click approach to gaining knowledge. Clinical guidelines should incorporate this approach.


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