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Physicians prompts can be defined as different mechanisms designed to periodically
remind them to perform some action(s) with their patients in order to achieve some
defined objective(s) or clinical outcomes, such as the delivery of preventive
Key messages
 All the studies were done in high income countries which constitute a limitation to
the application of the findings to low and middle-income countries.
 Prompting physicians probably can improve performance in preventive care. This
includes different preventive procedures such as faecal blood occult test, mammogram,
PAP smear, influenza, tetanus and pneumonia vaccination, among others.
 Both computer and non-computer generated prompts may improve performance in
preventive care.
 There is a lack of cost-effectiveness studies comparing different ways of generating
and/or delivering the prompts.
 Access to preventive services is a requisite for the effectiveness of this kind of interventions.
Therefore, coverage of preventive services should be considered when
implementing them.

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