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J Healthc Risk Manag. 1997 Spring;17(2):3-11.

Massachusetts Risk Management Survey (MaRMS) of teaching hospital physicians.

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  • 1St. Elizabeth's Medical Center, Boston, MA, USA.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To assess and compare the risk management knowledge of physicians from Massachusetts teaching hospitals.

DESIGN:

A survey.

SETTING:

Participating Massachusetts teaching hospitals.

PARTICIPANTS:

639 of some 2,000 staff physicians of participant hospitals who were sent surveys. An additional 174 postgraduate year 1 (PGY1) and PGY3 house officers also completed the survey.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:

Percent of questions answered correctly, and comparisons between staff physicians and house officers.

RESULTS:

Staff physicians scored higher (87%) than PGY1s and PGY3s combined (81%), P<0.001. Scores among staff physicians did not differ according to field of medicine, age, proportion of time spent in clinical practice, or years in practice. PGY3s did not score significantly higher than PGY1s (82% vs. 80%). Some 40% of physicians said they ordered more tests than necessary because of malpractice worries; they indicated 72% of their colleagues do so as well. Physicians in obstetrics-gynecology and emergency medicine were more likely to respond yes to this question than physicians in other fields of medicine (P<0.001), as were physicians who had been defendants in a malpractice suit (88 P=0.013).

CONCLUSIONS:

Surveyed staff physicians have an adequate risk management knowledge. Training directors should encourage house officers to attend risk management programs to improve their knowledge. Physicians might overestimate the amount spent on defense medicine based on their perceptions of other physicians.

PMID:
10173137
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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