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Data shows potentially better health care with female doctors

New York hospital patients may have a better chance of surviving an illness if their primary physician is a woman. This is according to a study that was recently published in the medical journal JAMA Internal Medicine..

There is a slight but distinct clinical difference between the outcomes for patients who have female doctors versus those who have male medical practitioners. Patients who have female doctors are also less prone to re-hospitalization in the month after they are discharged. According to researchers, if male doctors could accomplish the same outcomes as their female counterparts, the lives of an extra 32,000 Medicare patients could be saved each year.

Information from earlier studies has shown that female physicians tend to adhere to practice procedures based on scientific evidence more than their male colleagues. The interactions they have with their patients also differ. Female doctors tend to spend more quality time with their patients, inquire about their social and emotional well-being and speak with them in a more positive and comforting manner.

The study, which was conducted by Harvard University researchers, examined the records of 1.5 million Medicare patients who were over the age of 65 and had been hospitalized for non-surgical health care between 2011 and 2014. The data showed that 11.07 percent of patients treated by female interns died within a month while 11.49 percent of patients treated by male interns did the same.

There was also a difference in re-hospitalization rates. The percentage of readmitted patients who were initially treated by a female doctor totaled 15.02 percent while it was 15.57 percent for those treated by male doctors.

Medical errors can cause a number of serious and sometimes fatal repercussions for a patient. An attorney who practices malpractice law may file a suit against the negligent parties to obtain financial compensation for a victim.

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