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The Evolution of Physician Practice Styles: Evidence from Cardiologist Migration

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  • David Molitor

Abstract

Physician treatment choices for observably similar patients vary dramatically across regions. This paper exploits cardiologist migration to disentangle the role of physician- specific factors such as preferences and learned behavior versus environment-level factors such as hospital capacity and productivity spillovers on physician behavior. Physicians starting in the same region and subsequently moving to dissimilar regions practice similarly before the move. After the move, physician behavior in the first year changes by 0.6-0.8 percentage points for each percentage point change in practice environment, with no further changes over time. This suggests environment factors explain between 60-80 percent of regional disparities in physician behavior.

Suggested Citation

  • David Molitor, 2016. "The Evolution of Physician Practice Styles: Evidence from Cardiologist Migration," NBER Working Papers 22478, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:22478
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    Cited by:

    1. Salm, Martin & Wübker, Ansgar, 2017. "Causes of regional variation in healthcare utilization in Germany," Ruhr Economic Papers 675, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
    2. Janet M. Currie & W. Bentley MacLeod, 2018. "Understanding Physician Decision Making: The Case of Depression," NBER Working Papers 24955, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • H51 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Government Expenditures and Health
    • I11 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Analysis of Health Care Markets
    • I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health

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