Study: Patients believe strongly in their physician

Maybe the health plans are willing to beat up on physician quality and efficiency, but don't expect patients to go that way, a new study from Kaiser Family Foundation, NPR and the Harvard School of Public Health suggests.

The three just conducted a poll of 1,238 adults on their attitudes regarding health services. Among other things, researchers concluded that while 49 percent of patients see the excessive ordering of tests and treatments as a "major problem," 87 percent said their doctors hadn't recommended an expensive test or treatment unnecessarily within the last two years. In short, patients trust their doctors.

Essentially, if policymakers want to reduce the volume of needless procedures, unnecessary CT scans and surgical procedures that don't help, criticizing the family doctor isn't going to help, it seems.

To learn more about the study:
- read this Wall Street Journal Health Blog piece