The impact of international medical graduate status on primary care physicians' choice of specialist

  • K.S. K
  • L.A. C
  • N.Y. W
 et al. 
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BACKGROUND: Approximately one fourth of practicing physicians in the United States graduated from medical schools in other countries. It is unknown how the role of international medical graduate status affects physician decision-making. OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study was to determine whether a primary care physicians' knowledge of a specialist's international medical graduate status affects his or her decision to refer patients to that specialist. RESEARCH DESIGN AND SUBJECTS: We studied a national, cross-sectional study of primary care physicians who see adult patients. The sample was drawn from the American Medical Association Physician's Professional Data. Each physician received 2 clinical case vignettes describing a patient for whom referral to a specialist was considered necessary. Each vignette was followed by 5 vignette specialist descriptions with medical school graduate status varied randomly alongside other physician characteristics. MEASURE: We measured the decision to refer to an international versus U.S. medical graduate specialist. RESULTS: Of 1054 eligible physicians, 623 (59.1%) responded. Respondents were significantly more likely to refer to a U.S. medical graduate (USMG) compared with an international medical graduate (IMG) (63% vs. 54%, P

Author-supplied keywords

  • *foreign worker
  • *general practitioner
  • *health personnel attitude
  • *medicine
  • *patient referral
  • *social psychology
  • United States
  • adult
  • article
  • cross-sectional study
  • decision making
  • epidemiology
  • factual database
  • female
  • human
  • male
  • manpower
  • middle aged
  • psychological aspect
  • public relations
  • regression analysis
  • statistics
  • utilization review

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  • Kinchen K.S.

  • Cooper L.A.

  • Wang N.Y.

  • Levine D.

  • Powe N.R.

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