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Problem List vs PMH

What is the difference between the "Past Medical History" and the "Problem List"? The key to understanding this more clearly is to focus on the purpose and intent of these two items.

The Past Medical History is the summation of a patient's health status prior to any presenting problems.

The Problem List is an itemization of current and active diagnoses and any prior diagnoses that contribute to the comorbidity around the care the patient is actively receiving.

Appropriate use of the Problem List can benefit both providers and hospitals. Even though creating the list might add a couple minutes of physician documentation time, the beneficial results are worth the effort!

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