Addressing the opioid epidemic: Is there a role for physician education?

Molly Schnell, Janet Currie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

28 Scopus citations

Abstract

Using national data on 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 practice location, 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.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)383-410
Number of pages28
JournalAmerican Journal of Health Economics
Volume4
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 1 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Health Policy
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

Keywords

  • General practitioner
  • Medical school rank
  • Opioid
  • Prescribing

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