The doctor-patient relationship in the post-managed care era

G. Caleb Alexander, John D. Lantos

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


The growth of managed care was accompanied by concern about the impact that changes in health care organization would have on the doctor-patient relationship (DPR). We now are in a "post-managed care era," where some of these changes in health care delivery have come to pass while others have not. A re-examination of the DPR in this setting suggests some surprising results. Rather than posing a new and unprecedented threat, managed care was simply the most recent of numerous strains on the DPR that have occurred throughout the century. These strains are a constant, inevitable consequence of the varying needs and concerns of patient and physicians as they seek to balance their desires for a certain type of DPR with their simultaneous desire for other aspects of care such as lower costs, greater technological sophistication, and improved outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)29-32
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican Journal of Bioethics
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Ethics
  • Managed care programs
  • Patient practice patterns
  • Patient-physician relations
  • Physician practice patterns

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Issues, ethics and legal aspects
  • Health Policy


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