Addressing the Opioid Epidemic: Is There a Role for Physician Education?

from Health Economics at http://bit.ly/2uznKmM on August 13, 2017 at 05:43AM


Using data on all opioid prescriptions written by physicians from 2006 to 2014, we uncover a striking relationship between opioid prescribing and medical school rank. Even within the same specialty and county of practice, physicians who completed their initial training at top medical schools write significantly fewer opioid prescriptions annually than physicians from lower ranked schools. Additional evidence suggests that some of this gradient represents a causal effect of education rather than patient selection across physicians or physician selection across medical schools. Altering physician education may therefore be a useful policy tool in fighting the current epidemic.

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