Preference for practice. A Danish study on young doctors choice of general practice using a discrete choice experiment

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Objective: This study examines the preferences of general practitioners (GPs) in training for organizational characteristics in general practice with focus on aspects that can mitigate problems with GP shortages. Study design: A discrete choice experiment was used to investigate preferences for the attributes practice type, number of GPs in general practice, collaboration with other practices, change in weekly working hours (administrative versus patient related), and change in yearly surplus. Data collection: In May 2011, all doctors actively engaged in the family medicine program in Denmark were invited to participate in a web-based survey. A total of 485 GPs in training responded to the questionnaire, resulting in a response rate of 56 %. Principal findings: A mixed logit model showed that GPs in training prefer to work in smaller shared practices (2 GPs). This stands in contrast to the preferences of current GPs. Hence, a generational change in the GP population is likely to introduce more productive practice forms, and problems with GP shortages are likely to be mitigated over the coming years. Results further showed that a majority of the respondents are willing to work in larger shared practices (with 3-4 GPs) if they receive an increase in surplus (approximately 50,000 DKK/6,719 EUR per year) and that they may be willing to take in more patient-related work if the increase in surplus is sufficient (approximately 200,000 DKK/26,875 EUR per year for 5 extra hours per week). Monetary incentives may therefore be an effective tool for further improving productivity.

Original languageEnglish
JournalEuropean Journal of Health Economics
Issue number6
Pages (from-to)611-621
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2014


  • Discrete choice experiment
  • General practice
  • Organization
  • Preferences
  • Choice Behavior
  • Humans
  • Workforce
  • Male
  • Models, Statistical
  • Denmark/epidemiology
  • General Practitioners/psychology
  • Career Choice
  • Practice Management, Medical/organization & administration
  • Adult
  • Female
  • General Practice/organization & administration
  • Surveys and Questionnaires

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