Physician Visits Down 7% in July
Total patient visits to physician offices were down 7.3% in July from the July 2009—the fourth consecutive month to post negative growth in physician visits, according to researchers with the North American offices of Deutsche Bank Securities. Overall, primary care visits were down by 5.7% for the month.
July appeared even weaker than June (with a 4.1% decline in visits) and the previous second quarter, with a 4.6% decrease in visits.
From a regional perspective, for total market growth for physician-patient visits, the West looked particularly weak in July (with an 8.5% decline) and in the 2nd quarter (with a 9.5% decline). In the South, total market growth for visits was down 7.9% in the South; down 5.1% in the East; and 6.9% in the Midwest.
As a result of these trends, volumes for major outpatient service provider chains—such as labs, ambulatory surgical centers, and imaging—may continue to be "constrained" into the third quarter, with a possible continued downward slide if these trends continue, the researchers said.
- As Medicare Advantage Cuts Loom, Disagreement Over Program's Stability
- Medicare Advantage Carriers See 'No Choice' But to Accept Cuts
- Centralizing the Revenue Cycle Protects the Bottom Line
- CA Fines 8 Hospitals for Medical Errors
- Physicians to Appeal 'Docs v. Glocks' Ruling in FL
- Doctors Feel Pressure to Accept Risk-based Reimbursement
- Surgical Checklists Unused in 10% of Hospitals, CMS Data Shows
- Employers Weigh Risks, Benefits of Private Exchanges
- 3 Management Lessons from a Supermarket Debacle
- A Fresh Look at End-of-Life Care