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One More Reason Why Changes to Our Healthcare System are Needed

Posted Dec 02 2008 6:26pm

Peggy Peck, Executive Editor at MedPage Today wrote an article titled Survey Reveals Large Numbers of Practicing Physicians Ready to Call it Quits.

She writes:

Nearly half of all practicing physicians, 49%, said that by 2011 they will have limited their practices or quit entirely, according to survey results released today.

And 45% said if they had the financial means, they would retire today.

Yet 78% of the 11,950 physicians who responded to the survey from The Physicians' Foundation said there is a shortage of primary care physicians in the United States.

The survey, mailed to 270,000 primary care doctors and 50,000 specialists, had a response rate of 3.7%.

Importantly, it was mailed from May through July 2008 -- before the market meltdown and ongoing worldwide financial crisis.

Among other findings of the survey:

- 11% of responders said they plan to retire sometime in the next three years
- 13% said they plan to stop clinical practice but want to continue to work in healthcare in a non-clinical capacity
- 82% said proposed cuts in Medicare reimbursement would make their practices unsustainable
- 66% said Medicaid doesn't pay enough to cover the cost of providing care and 36% said the same of Medicare
- 33% said they no longer accept Medicaid patients and 12% said they would not accept Medicare patients
- only 17% said their practices were financially healthy and profitable

And this at a time when our senior population is about to put stresses on our health care system that we've never seen before.

Read her entire article. It's very informative.

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