Poll: Healthcare reform will harm PCPs

A majority of healthcare providers think primary care physicians (PCPs) will be worse off after all aspects of healthcare reform are implemented than they are now, according to a recent survey by Managed Healthcare Executive.

Managed Healthcare Executive, a sister media brand of Medical Economics, polled an array of providers on how they believe various parts of the healthcare community will fare when all aspects of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) take effect.

The results came as no surprise to Marty Hauser, chief executive officer of Akron, Ohio-based SummaCare. "While managing risk, transparency, and access to data will be challenging, at the end of the day, it will always be about the money and how to divide it," Hauser said.

The survey also revealed that healthcare providers, including PCPs, still have a long way to go in implementing the new International Classification of Diseases (ICD-10) coding system, the deadline for which is October 2013. Only 4% of the 179 responding providers said their progress in implementing ICD-10 is "nearly complete," whereas 44% said they had taken some action, and 17% said they have an implementation strategy but have not yet acted on it. The remaining 18% said they have not yet addressed implementation.

Laura Corn, ICD-10 practice lead consultant for the consulting firm Accenture, said many providers have been diverted from thinking about ICD-10 implementation by the need to meet earlier mandates in the PPACA, the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act, and the Health Information Portability and Accountability Act. "There are a lot of initiatives that are taking human resources and capital, and people and budgets are stretched," she said.

Results and analysis of the full survey are available at http://www.medicaleconomics.com/reformimpact.