Americans Lack Faith in Primary Care

Americans are deeply skeptical about the viability of the primary-care physician model, which is the predominant health care delivery system in the United States, according to survey commissioned by PartnerMD. Sixty-nine percent are worried about the future of the traditional primary-care model. They are also worried that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) will severely limit their contact with doctors.

Fifty-one percent are worried about rising health care costs and 23% are worried about new health care regulations. Only 10% of expect the ACA to improve their care while one-third are concerned about its negative effects on care. PartnerMD CEO Linda Nash said, “I am a strong supporter of implementing an affordable national health care system, but as millions of new patients are entering the system, increased workloads and shrinking reimbursements are driving physicians out of it. The result is a care model that’s falling short.”

The following survey data confirms the bleak state of the traditional primary-care model:
• More than one-third of patients have to wait four or more days to see their doctor, and nearly one-quarter have to wait longer than a week.
• 93% of Americans spend less than 30 minutes with their doctor at appointments, and nearly one-third see them for less than 10 minutes.

“The traditional model puts doctors under tremendous pressure to treat huge numbers of patients at light speed. And full appointment schedules leave those with acute care needs without many options. It’s understandable that many patients and physicians are looking for a better care model,” said Dr. Jim Mumper, a PartnerMD physician and the company’s chief medical officer.

One such model that has seen tremendous growth is concierge medicine. PartnerMD’s survey found that 13% of Americans are willing to pay an annual fee for increased access to their physician, which could represent more than 31 million more patients in the concierge model. “While we have seen tremendous expansion, there’s still a huge opportunity for growth in the membership-based model,” said Nash. For more information, visit www.PartnerMD.com.

Last Updated 09/23/2020

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