primary health care, health service research, episodes of care, episode cluster, cardiology, pneumology, outpatient care



  1. Sala, Joan MD
  2. Riba, Dolors Ma PhD
  3. Manresa, Frederic MD


The purpose of this study is to identify groups of care episodes that involve pneumologic and cardiologic problems and that exhibit homogeneous patterns of frequentation and diagnostic test consumption in an ambulatory consulting room. A 1-year prospective study of care content was done, and the episodes were retrospectively analyzed 2 years later. Data were collected in an ambulatory cardiologic and pneumologic consulting room in Spain. Nonlinear principal components analysis was applied before cluster analysis. Five typologies with a homogeneous pattern of resource consumption were obtained: three related to acute episodes of care and two to chronic ones.