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What the General Internist Does

John W. Burnside, MD
Arch Intern Med. 1977;137(9):1286-1288. doi:10.1001/archinte.1977.03630210142047.
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To design a program for the training of the general internist, we must know what tasks he is required to perform. Between the general imperative of providing patient care and the specific local requirements of the community, there must exist some general needs and demands that should provide guidelines for the training of the general internist.

To assess the effect of the variables of practice, location, income, and professional alliances, four internists were asked to discuss their professional life-styles. They represented different, although perhaps not totally representative, forms of practice. From their remarks similarities were evident that should bear on the development of training programs for the general internist.

Robert B. Copeland, MD, is one of seven general internists in a multidiscipline private clinic of 19 physicians in LaGrange, Ga (population, 26,000; surrounding underserved population, 110,000 to 250,000). The majority of the professional efforts of Dr Copeland and his internist


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