Does Quality Affect Patients' Choice of Doctor? Evidence from England

Rita Santos, Hugh Gravelle*, Carol Propper

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)
303 Downloads (Pure)


Reforms giving users of public services choice of provider aim to improve quality. But such reforms will work only if quality affects choice of provider. We test this crucial prerequisite in the English health care market by examining the choice of 3.4 million individuals of family doctor. Family doctor practices provide primary care and control access to non-emergency hospital care, the quality of their clinical care is measured and published and care is free. In this setting, clinical quality should affect choice. We find that a 1 standard deviation increase in clinical quality would increase practice size by around 17%.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)445-494
Number of pages50
JournalEconomic Journal
Issue number600
Early online date23 Feb 2016
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2017


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