What has been mostly anecdotal over the past several years has now been confirmed by researchers from Harvard Medical School, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center: Fewer patients than ever are going to traditional primary care practices, meaning their patronage is up for grabs. Between 2002 and 2015, there was a 2% drop in the number of patients who have an established primary care provider. While younger patients, people of color, men, and those living in the South were least likely to be dedicated to a PCP, the trend is evident among all demographic groups. Calling on data from the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey, the researchers noted that only 75% of Americans say they have a primary healthcare provider. This leaves a sizeable (and growing) void that urgent care is ideally suited to fill. Ensure that your patient throughput, payment policies, and “customer” service are what patients expect. For insights into how to accomplish that, read Creating the ‘Ideal’ Urgent Care Experience in our archive.
Primary Care Access is Waning; Those Patients Should Be Coming to Your Urgent Care Center