Patient care may vary based on generational differences among specialists | MD Analytics ULC

Patient care may vary based on generational differences among specialists

Key insights have emerged in a new study conducted by MD Analytics in terms of differences in how younger and older Canadian physician specialists perceive aspects of patient care.

Building on previous findings that showcased generational differences among primary care physicians, MD Analytics conducted a follow up study in March of 2023 that included a mix of 100 Canadian physician specialists. The overall objective of this study was to determine the extent to which a generational gap may exist in approaches to treatment and patient management. In our analysis, we divided specialists into two groups: younger physicians, those under 45, and older physicians, those 46 and older.

Our survey highlighted that while older specialists were more likely to say patients have become more knowledgeable about their conditions and available treatments compared to younger specialists, regardless of age the vast majority agree patients often have misconceptions about their disease. Despite this agreement the study highlighted differences in openness to patients playing a more central role in their care with younger specialists more likely to agree that a lack of supports that allow patients to take on more of a self-management role is a significant barrier in their care and management of patients.

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Younger and older specialists also differ in terms of the type of interventions they use in their care and management of patients. While older physicians are more likely to use or recommend exercise, younger specialists are more likely to use or recommend OTC medications and alternative medicine options. While all are using and prescribing prescription medications as part of their patient management, older specialists tend to have more favorable views on branded medications and are more likely to say they prefer to prescribe branded options over generics if they have the option.

These results suggest there may be key differences in how Canadian physician specialists of different generations approach patient care. Understanding how these differences impact physicians and their perceptions may help to build supports and resources to better address their needs.

Infographics may contain select findings from our Independent Studies. Contact us to find out if your organization qualifies for a complimentary presentation with access to the full report.

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