The importance of generalist skills for multimorbidity patient care

The importance of generalist skills for multimorbidity patient care

  • 15 October 2021

The importance of generalist skills for multimorbidity patient care

The proportion of patients with two or more medical conditions continues to increase. The majority of over 75s now have 3 or more conditions and almost one in five 40-69 year olds have at least 2 conditions. This trend remains a challenge to the entire medical profession. Whilst greater specialisation, particularly in secondary care, has improved clinical outcomes for individual conditions, generalist skills are becoming increasingly important when faced with patients with multiple long-term conditions. Shifting back to maintaining and celebrating generalism in the medical workforce is critical to respond to the changing pattern to health and disease in the population.

Professor Chris Whitty
Chief Medical Officer
Department of Health and Social Care, London, UK

The importance of generalist skills for multimorbidity patient care

The proportion of patients with two or more medical conditions continues to increase. The majority of over 75s now have 3 or more conditions and almost one in five 40-69 year olds have at least 2 conditions. This trend remains a challenge to the entire medical profession. Whilst greater specialisation, particularly in secondary care, has improved clinical outcomes for individual conditions, generalist skills are becoming increasingly important when faced with patients with multiple long-term conditions. Shifting back to maintaining and celebrating generalism in the medical workforce is critical to respond to the changing pattern to health and disease in the population.

Professor Chris Whitty
Chief Medical Officer
Department of Health and Social Care, London, UK