RATIONALE, AIMS AND OBJECTIVES: Recent health care reforms in the Netherlands have led to the introduction of intermediate health care. Intermediate health care combines features of primary care and secondary (hospital) care. It is characterized by a task shift from hospital care to primary care. The initial experiences of medical specialists and general practitioners with intermediate health care are positive. However, the patients' perspectives regarding this reform are unknown. This study aimed to evaluate the level of support from patients with back and/or neck pain for intermediate health care services and to provide insight into their preferences how this care should be organized.