Do Malpractice Concerns, Payment Mechanisms, and Attitudes Influence Test-Ordering Decisions?

Published in: Neurology, v. 62, no. 1, Jan. 13, 2004, p. 119-121

Posted on on January 01, 2004

by Gretchen L. Birbeck, David R. Gifford, J Song, Thomas R. Belin, Brian Mittman, Barbara Vickrey

Read More

Access further information on this document at

This article was published outside of RAND. The full text of the article can be found at the link above.

Greater understanding is needed of nonclinical factors that determine neurologists' decisions to order tests. The authors surveyed 595 US neurologists and utilized demographic information, attitude scales, and clinical scenarios to evaluate the influence of nonclinical factors on test-ordering decisions. Greater test reliance, higher malpractice concerns, and receiving reimbursement for testing were all associated with a higher likelihood of test ordering. These findings have implications for training needs and suggest malpractice worries may inflate health care costs.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation External publication series. Many RAND studies are published in peer-reviewed scholarly journals, as chapters in commercial books, or as documents published by other organizations.

The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.