Primary care doctors focused on effciency, emerging business models

March 10, 2014

A new survey of American physicians show that the vast majority are struggling to engage their patients, cope with impacts of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and deal with changing reimbursement models.

A new survey of American physicians show that the vast majority are struggling to engage their patients, cope with impacts of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and deal with changing reimbursement models.

The national survey of family physicians and internal medicine doctors was conducted by Ipsos in April 2013 for Wolters Kluwer Health, a healthcare publishing firm.

The results show that 67% of the surveyed physicians believe the ACA is a “top contributor” to rising healthcare costs. Three out of five physicians say that uninsured patients are driving up costs.

Regarding healthcare technology, physicians said that progress is being made on electronic health records functionality, but that too little progress has been made in the areas of ease of use (56%), improving patient relationships (61%), and increasing efficiency (66%).

The surveyed physicians top focus in the next three to five years is: Increasing their practice efficiency (48%); exploring different business models, including joining a hospital system or a Patient-Centered Medical Home (34%); and adopting technology to help with evidence-based decision making (34%).

A striking finding is that 33% say they are likely to leave the practice of medicine in the next year or two. The top reasons? They said it’s difficult to make their practice profitable and the field of medicine is no longer rewarding to them.

The survey is a bi-annual survey first conducted in 2011. More than 300 primary care physicians were surveyed from a national sample.

 

 

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