Patients think PCPs are tops among docs

Good news: 62% of Americans ranked PCPs as their favorite care providers in a recent poll. So don't take it as bad news when they offer three pieces of constructive criticism.

Good news for you: 62% of Americans ranked primary care physicians (PCPs) as their favorite medical care providers in a recent poll conducted by GfK Roper. By contrast, 16% listed specialists, 13% listed hospitals, and 3% listed urgent care facilities.

But even PCPs have room for improvement, according to survey respondents. Nearly 40% of them say that increased communication between doctors would improve the medical experience, and greater appointment availability would better the experience for another 31%. Ease of access to medical records was cited by 15% as a way to improve their medical experience, according to the survey.

The poll also offers a glimpse at who is mostly likely to visit a doctor for preventive care. Patients with an annual household income of $20,000 or more were nearly twice as likely to schedule such visits as those earning less than $20,000 per year, and women of all ages see physicians for preventive care more often than men.

Electronic health record company Practice Fusion, which commissioned the study from GfK Roper, says that local doctors deliver 80% of the nation’s patient care and have faced a 52.6% increase in operating costs since 2001.

The national telephone study was conducted by GfK on 1,000 American adults from April 13-15, 2012.

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