On Hot-Button Issues, Doctors Don’t Keep Politics Out Of Exam Room
A new study finds that on certain topics — like abortion, marijuana use and gun control — physicians' political views influence how they treat their patients.
The Associated Press:
Survey: Doctors' Political Views May Affect Patient Care
Politics in the exam room? A new study suggests patient care may vary depending on whether the doctor is a Democrat or a Republican — at least when it comes to some hot-button health issues like firearm safety. Health care has long drawn partisan political fights, like state laws surrounding abortion, or Florida's law restricting doctors from discussing guns with patients. But there's been little research on the doctor-patient side of those controversies. Can physicians leave their own political ideology at the door during something as simple as a checkup? (Neergaard, 10/3)
The Washington Post:
Democratic And Republican Doctors Treat Patients Differently
Participants were asked to evaluate nine hypothetical scenarios they might face with patients. With each vignette, they were asked to evaluate how concerned they’d be about the issue and how likely they’d be to engage in a list of potential treatment options. The scenarios covered everything from a patient who had regular sexual contact with sex workers to one who commutes to work by motorcycle but doesn’t wear a helmet. The responses showed clear differences between providers identified independently as Democrats or Republicans when it came to politically charged issues. For example, Republicans were most concerned about scenarios that included multiple prior abortions and marijuana use. Democrats were most concerned about firearm access and patients who had sexual relationships with sex workers. (Blakemore, 10/3)
Los Angeles Times:
The Care You Get From Your Doctor May Depend On His Or Her Political Views
“Just as a patient may seek out a physician of a certain gender to feel more comfortable, the evidence suggests that a patient may need to make the same calculation regarding political ideology,” political scientist Eitan Hersh and psychiatrist Matthew Goldenberg wrote Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. (Kaplan, 10/3)
The CT Mirror:
Study Asks: Do Doctors’ Political Views Influence Care?
You might know where your doctor went to medical school, but does it matter if he’s a Republican or a Democrat? A new study by Yale researchers suggests it might – at least when it comes to politically charged issues such as marijuana use, abortion or having a gun at home. (Levin Becker, 10/3)