The purpose of this study was to evaluate change in patient outcomes as a function of practice styles of primary care providers. A prospective, repeated-measures, correlational design was used. Data were collected about (1) providers' self-ratings of practice styles, inclusive of practice model, confidence, autonomy, collaboration, information giving, and job satisfaction, and (2) primary care patients' self-ratings of health status, functional status, information seeking, and satisfaction. When severity and comorbidity were controlled, physicians, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants produced equivalent outcomes; neither practice style nor provider type resulted in differences in health outcomes of primary care patients. Practice style did affect patient satisfaction. Patients were least satisfied with providers who scored high on collaboration and most satisfied with providers who scored low on the practice model. Neither provider type nor interpersonal attributes had an effect on health outcomes; sicker patients got better and healthy patients stayed that way.
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