Letters Physician spending and risk of malpractice claims

Physician spending and risk of malpractice claims: what about the effects of socioeconomic status?

BMJ 2015; 351 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.h6765 (Published 14 December 2015) Cite this as: BMJ 2015;351:h6765
  1. John S Barbieri, resident physician1,
  2. Carrie L Kovarik, associate professor2
  1. 1Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA
  2. 2Department of Dermatology, Dermatopathology, and Infectious Diseases, University of Pennsylvania
  1. john.barbieri{at}uphs.upenn.edu

Jena and colleagues’ evaluation of the association between physician spending and malpractice claims found that higher spending is associated with fewer claims.1 However, although they examined several potential confounders, including age, sex, race, diagnosis related group, and comorbid conditions, they did not include socioeconomic status (SES). Previous work has shown that, although there is a perception among physicians that patients of lower SES are more likely …

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