Abstract

Physicians are a major referral source for neuropsychologists, but little is known about the aspects of neuropsychological evaluation that physicians do and do not find useful. In this study, 5000 members of the American Medical Association were surveyed about their use of, and satisfaction with, neuropsychological evaluation, and reasons for not referring patients for evaluation. A total of 517 usable surveys (10.8% response rate) were returned. Results indicated that respondents referred patients most often for diagnostic purposes, and they were generally satisfied with neuropsychological services. Lack of familiarity with neuropsychology and geographic proximity to a neuropsychologist were cited as the main barriers to referral. Primary care physicians were most likely to have never referred a patient for evaluation. The results are discussed in terms of the need for future educational efforts to increase physicians' awareness of the field of neuropsychology and provide physicians with access to clinical neuropsychologists.