Hospital-Physician Relations: Cooperation, Competition or Separation?

Dec. 5, 2006
Health Affairs , Web Exclusive
Robert A. Berenson, Paul B. Ginsburg, Jessica H. May

Because many services performed in hospitals can safely and conveniently be performed in ambulatory settings, physicians have become owners of entities directly competing with hospitals for patients in a new medical arms race. Hospitals and medical staff physicians face growing tensions as a result of physicians’ growing reluctance to take emergency department call and the consequences of hospitalists replacing physicians in the care of inpatients. Although there are increasing expectations that health system challenges will lead hospitals and physicians to collaborate, in many markets the willingness and ability for hospitals and physicians to work together is actually eroding.

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