Doctors practice medicine in many different settings and for most surgeons the way in which a doctor practices is often associated with the manner in which she is associated with the hospital in which she operates. The two most common types of practice scenarios are hospital based practices and private office practices.
In most hospital based practices the physician's office is physically located in a hospital complex or a hospital identified center. In many of these cases the doctor is actually an employee of the hospital and is therefore integrally linked to the particular institution. Patients are directed to ancillary services like radiology, oncology, radiation, etc. which are usually part of the the same institution. Therefore, choosing a hospital based practice means that you will likely receive all your treatment in a more institutional type setting.
Private practices are best described as being the traditional form of medical care where the physician is self-employed and sees patients in a private office. This type of setting is often more private, more relaxed, and one which we believe fosters a more intimate doctor-patient relationship.
Although the private office based physician is mostly associated with one primary hospital she is often associated with multiple hospitals and is able to decide which facility might best serve the needs of a particular patient. The private office based physician is more independent and therefore likely to work in conjunction with service providers who are similarly office based.
As a result of this greater degree of independence, the private practice physician often exercises broader flexibility in using services of other professionals drawn from a broader range of institutions.