News Release

U of M research finds best primary care practices are proactive in patient outreach

Peer-Reviewed Publication

University of Minnesota Medical School

MINNEAPOLIS/ST. PAUL (10/03/2023) —Published in the Annals of Family Medicine, University of Minnesota Medical School researchers found primary care practices with the best diabetes care are proactive in patient outreach. The study evaluated diabetes care delivery in more than 300 primary care practices across Minnesota over seven years. 

“Having a good relationship with your doctor is important for your health,” said Kevin Peterson, MD, MPH, professor at the U of M Medical School and family medicine physician with M Health Fairview. “Good communication and engagement are characteristics of high quality primary care practices — this is something you might consider when looking for a doctor for you and your family.”

The study found top-performing practices have similar priorities and use a similar set of strategies for the delivery of diabetes care. Notably, all of these practices: 

  • Proaactively reached out to patients with diabetes and consciously prioritized the value of maintaining a good patient relationship through regular communication
  • Standardized the care delivery process to improve the navigation of complex recommendations
  • Engaged staff and clinicians in improving care delivery
  • Expanded the healthcare team to enhance patient support

The research team recently published an additional study evaluating what physician practices can do to improve care. 

This research is part of the UNITED study — a partnership between the Department of Family Medicine and Community Health and HealthPartners Institute. Funding was provided by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.


About the University of Minnesota Medical School
The University of Minnesota Medical School is at the forefront of learning and discovery, transforming medical care and educating the next generation of physicians. Our graduates and faculty produce high-impact biomedical research and advance the practice of medicine. We acknowledge that the U of M Medical School, both the Twin Cities campus and Duluth campus, is located on traditional, ancestral and contemporary lands of the Dakota and the Ojibwe, and scores of other Indigenous people, and we affirm our commitment to tribal communities and their sovereignty as we seek to improve and strengthen our relations with tribal nations. For more information about the U of M Medical School, please visit

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