PURPOSE: To examine associations between board certification of psychiatrists and neurologists and quality-of-care measures, using multilevel models controlling for physician and patient characteristics, and to assess feasibility of linking physician information with patient records to construct quality measures from electronic claims data. METHOD: The authors identified quality measures and matched claims data from 2006 to 2012 with 942 board-certified (BC) psychiatrists, 868 non-board-certified (nBC) psychiatrists, 963 BC neurologists, and 328 nBC neurologists. Using the matched data, they identified psychiatrists who treated at least one patient with a schizophrenia diagnosis, and neurologists attending patients discharged with a principal diagnosis of ischemic stroke, and analyzed claims from these patients. For patients with schizophrenia who were prescribed an atypical antipsychotic, quality measures were claims for glucose and lipid tests, duration of any antipsychotic treatment, and concurrent prescription of multiple antipsychotics. For patients with ischemic stroke, quality measures were dysphagia evaluation; speech/language evaluation; and prescription of clopidogrel, low-molecular-weight heparin, intravenous heparin, and warfarin (for patients with co-occurring atrial fibrillation). RESULTS: Overall, multilevel models (patients nested within physicians) showed no statistically significant differences in quality measures between BC and nBC psychiatrists and neurologists. CONCLUSIONS: The authors demonstrated the feasibility of linking physician information with patient records to construct quality measures from electronic claims data, but there may be only minimal differences in the quality of care between BC and nBC psychiatrists and neurologists, or there may be a difference that could not be measured with the quality measures used.
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