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Table 4 Descriptions of the final set of papers in terms of the type of study and the key findings

From: What is the overall impact or effectiveness of visiting primary health care services in rural and remote communities in high-income countries? A systematic review

Author/s and Year Type of Study Outcomes Assessed Key Findings
Aljasir & Alghamdi (2010) Descriptive cross-sectional design • Satisfaction with structure of visiting service • Satisfaction with services provided • Overall satisfaction compared with primary health care centres • 35.8% rated the location of the clinic as unsatisfactory • 20.5% rated the schedule (1/week) as unsatisfactory • 62.5% indicated the mobile clinic provided a lower quality of service compared with a primary health care centre • 90.9% suggested that the mobile clinic was not dependable in providing health care in the area
Allen (1996) Case study • Number of clients accessing the service • Reasons for accessing the service • Cost comparison between Outreach Service and Hospital Service • 59 clients accessed physiotherapy appointments in the first 4 months • 30 clients attended for long-standing musculoskeletal pain syndromes, 29 attended for acute musculoskeletal pain/injuries • $7 to $10 for a hospital occasion of service (15 min direct client contact) compared with $36 for the outreach service
Jackson-Pulver et al. (2010) Retrospective cross-sectional audit of dental service client records • Level of dental volunteer involvement, client attendance, and treatment provision • Perceptions of stakeholders regarding practical arrangements, care provided, and future directions • The program met a pressing need (eliminated a 2 year waiting list) • Enhanced workforce development • Continuity of care was important to virtually all respondents • Cross-cultural relationships were fostered
McDermott et al. (2001) Unblinded Cluster RCT • Weight, blood pressure, eye and foot care, serum lipid levels, glucose monitoring and control, urinary albumin to creatinine ratio, serum creatinine levels • Administration of recommended vaccines • Hospitalisation in previous 12 months • A greater improvement in most measures over the 12 months in the intervention sites • At follow-up, those in the intervention groups were 40% less likely to be hospitalised for a diabetes-related condition than those in control group
Roberts-Thomson et al. (2010) Cluster RCT • Oral health promotion activities in the community • Personal oral health practices of children • No significant differences in the uptake of community level oral health promotion activities between the intervention and control communities at the two year follow-up • No significant difference on the clinical measures between children in the intervention and control groups
Rowley et al. (2008) Cohort study with population level data as a comparator • Mortality from all causes and from cardiovascular disease • Hospitalisation with cardiovascular disease coded as a primary cause of admission • Mortality significantly lower than that of the NT Indigenous population • Hospitalisation with CVD as a primary cause was 13/1000 person-years for the cohort, compared with 33/1000 person-years for the NT Indigenous population.
Scrace & Margolis (2009) Retrospective longitudinal report comparing historical controls with a dedicated fly-in/fly-out primary care skin cancer outreach clinic • Skin cancer diagnosis and management • An increase in the number of lesions removed per year • Four-fold increase in melanoma detection