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Physician Labour Supply in Canada: a Cohort Analysis

  • Thomas F. Crossley
  • Jeremiah Hurley
  • Sung-Hee Jeon

This paper employs cohort analysis to examine the relative importance of different factors in explaining changes in the number of hours spent in direct patient care by Canadian general/ family practitioners (GP/FPs) over the period 1982 to 2002. Cohorts are defined by year of graduation from medical school. The results for male GP/FPs indicate that: there is little age effect on hours of direct patient care, especially among physicians aged 35 to 55; there is no strong cohort effect on hours of direct patient care; but there is a secular decline in hours of direct patient care over the period. The results for female GP/FPs indicate that: female physicians on average work fewer hours than male physicians; there is a clear age effect on hours of direct patient care; there is no strong cohort effect; there has been little secular change in average hours of direct patient care. The changing behaviour of male GP/FPs accounted for a greater proportion of the overall decline in hours of direct patient care from the 80’s through the mid 90’s than did the growing proportion of female GP/FPs in the physician stock.

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File URL: http://socserv.mcmaster.ca/sedap/p/sedap162.pdf
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Paper provided by McMaster University in its series Social and Economic Dimensions of an Aging Population Research Papers with number 162.

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Length: 26 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2006
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:mcm:sedapp:162
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Web page: http://www.mcmaster.ca/economics/
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  1. Christopher Ferrall & Allan W. Gregory & William Tholl, 1998. "Endogenous Work Hours and Practice Patterns of Canadian Physicians," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 31(1), pages 1-27, February.
  2. Brown, M C, 1989. "Empirical Determinants of Physician Incomes--Evidence from Canadian Data," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 14(4), pages 273-89.
  3. James Thornton & B. Kelly Eakin, 1997. "The Utility-Maximizing Self-Employed Physician," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 32(1), pages 98-128.
  4. Feldstein, Martin S, 1970. "The Rising Price of Physicians' Services," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 52(2), pages 121-33, May.
  5. Brown, Douglas M & Lapan, Harvey E, 1979. "The Supply of Physicians' Services," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 17(2), pages 269-79, April.
  6. Rizzo, John A. & Blumenthal, David, 1994. "Physician labor supply: Do income effects matter?," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(4), pages 433-453.
  7. Lapan, Harvey E. & Brown, Douglas M., 1988. "Utility Maximization, Individual Production and Market Equilibrium," Staff General Research Papers 10815, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  8. Anthony Scott, 2005. "The Productivity of Doctors in Australia: The ‘Flat of the Curve’ and Beyond?," Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series wp2005n19, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne.
  9. Sung-Hee Jeon & Jeremiah Hurley, 2004. "The Relationship between Physician Labour Supply, Service Volume and Service Intensity," Centre for Health Economics and Policy Analysis Working Paper Series 2004-03, Centre for Health Economics and Policy Analysis (CHEPA), McMaster University, Hamilton, Canada.
  10. James Thornton, 1998. "The labour supply behaviour of self-employed solo practice physicians," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 30(1), pages 85-94.
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