Thirteen consultant neurologists working in ten different towns or cities in the United Kingdom were asked to log all their encounters with patients in 1 week. The median number of encounters was 79 (range 33-144). Forty-one per cent were new patients; 85% of all new patient encounters were with National Health Service patients. In more than four-fifths of all encounters, the neurologist felt that the consultation was a justified use of his experience. Consultations for headache/migraine and epilepsy together accounted for over a quarter of all encounters.
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