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Table 4 Physician and patient characteristics, by intervention group

From: Printed educational messages fail to increase use of thiazides as first-line medication for hypertension in primary care: a cluster randomized controlled trial [ISRCTN72772651]

  informed only Insert Atheoretical outsert TPB-based outsert Insert + atheoretical outsert developed Insert + TPB-based outsert All p value*
N = 1166 N = 1093 N = 565 N = 585 N = 550 N = 545 N = 4504
Physician characteristics
Sex (% male) 76.3 77.5 75.4 80.5 78.9 76.0 77.3 0.25
Place of training (%)         0.24
• Canada or USA 78.2 75.6 73.8 78.6 77.8 80.8 76.8
• UK Ireland, Australia, New Zealand 7.8 8.8 11.2 9.4 11.6 8.1 9.2
• Other 14.0 15.6 15.0 12.0 10.6 11.1 14.0
Solo practice (%) 66.1 72.7 70.3 68.0 69.5 68.6 69.2 0.030
Rurala (%) 11.0 12.1 14.9 12.5 12.7 10.3 11.9 0.18
Years since graduation: mean (std) 26.3 (10.2) 27.0 (10.1) 26.7 (10.3) 26.9 (10.0) 26.4 (10.0) 26.5 (9.2) 26.6 (10.0) 0.51
Elapsed time between mail-out and patient visit (days): median (25th, 75th percentiles)b 185 (99, 276) 191 (105, 275) 196 (103, 275) 190 (102, 274) 184 (99, 270) 186 (101, 274) 189 (101, 274) 0.26
Patients newly treated for hypertension started on only a thiazide (%) 27.6 27.4 27.3 26.3 27.8 28.9 27.5 0.69
Patient characteristics
Number of patient visits 6151 5507 3028 3188 2907 2802 23,583  
Sex (% female) 53.0 52.6 54.5 53.4 51.8 52.1 52.9 0.32
Age at time of visit to physician: median (25th, 75th percentiles) 74 (70, 79) 74 (70, 79) 74 (70, 79) 74 (70, 80) 74 (70, 80) 74 (70, 79) 70 (70, 79) 0.25
Location of the visit (%)         0.051
• Physician office 95.4 95.7 95.5 95.9 94.8 95.9 95.5  
• Long-term care 3.5 3.2 3.5 3.0 4.5 3.0 3.4  
• Patient’s home or consultation by phone 1.2 1.0 1.0 1.1 0.7 1.2 1.0  
  1. *p value testing the null hypothesis that there was no difference amongst the intervention groups. The proportion of patients receiving an eye exam was compared using GEE
  2. aA practice area was designated as rural if it was located in a geographic region with a population smaller than 10,000
  3. bElapsed time from the date of the mail-out to the date of the patient’s visit was measured for each patient rather than for each physician