Little is known about the relationships between physician practice size and patient treatments or outcomes. We examined whether the practice size of attending physicians was related to within-hospital differences in care for Medicare patients with acute myocardial infarction (AMI). We found that patients treated by solo physicians were less likely to receive cardiac catheterization and angioplasty within a day of admission and more likely to die than other patients in the same hospital, even after a number of patient and physician characteristics were taken into account. These differences suggest that solo practitioners are less likely to follow guidelines calling for quick use of angioplasty.
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