a1 Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing
a2 Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health
In a pretest-posttest panel survey of 595 eligible Maryland physicians practicing family or general medicine, internal medicine, cardiology, or nephrology, perceptions of consensus reports designed to alter medical practice are examined. On a 7-point scale, physicians reported positive or neutral views of descriptors, most favorably rating credible (mean = 2.25) and reliable (mean = 2.41), and least favorably rating biased (mean = 3.79). In a regression analysis of factors influencing changes in practice behavior congruent with consensus recommendations before and 1 year after the release of a consensus report on hypertension (8), these perceptions were not significant determinants. The strongest predictor of congruent practice behavior a year after the report was published was congruent practice behavior just prior to the report's release, and the second strongest predictor was perceived influence of the report's sources/sponsors.