Our study revealed an appreciation for the importance of primary care, yet a number of barriers preventing consumers from accessing it. Consumers cite time constraints and financial burden as primary reasons they only utilize primary care when they are not feeling well. And, while most acknowledge that virtual care can deliver easier access to healthcare, many still view it as a quick, one-off solution.
The primary care shortage continues to worsen, leaving patients with a dearth of affordable and convenient care options. As a result, Americans wait an average of 24 days to get an appointment with a primary care physician, and the average time spent in a waiting room is 64 minutes. The time it takes to see a physician proves to be a major barrier for consumers and is poised to worsen over the next decade. The Association of American Medical Colleges estimates that the United States will see a shortage of more than 120,000 physicians by 2032.
However, our survey results show that virtual care may be a viable solution to these challenges. More than half of consumers believe that virtual visits can deliver easier access to healthcare, highlighting an opportunity to serve those patients who are unable to see their physician in-person, or do not have a primary care physician.
“The results of our survey validate that consumers are open to receiving primary care virtually, which can rapidly improve patient care and solve for challenging access barriers that exist today,” said Hill Ferguson, CEO of Doctor On Demand. “We see an enormous opportunity to strengthen the healthcare system by connecting more consumers to high quality, video-based virtual primary care.”
Doctor On Demand’s “The State of Primary Care in America” survey polled more than 1,000 consumers from across the country. Key findings include:
- Most consumers understand the depth of what a primary care physician can treat. More than 70% of consumers are knowledgeable around the wide range of conditions a primary care physician can treat, including chronic conditions, stress, and anxiety. Yet, more than 25% do not see a physician for ongoing or preventive care.
- Time is the top reason consumers don’t see a primary care physician annually. For those who do not see a primary care physician annually, the top reason is because they do not have time to make, wait, and travel for an appointment, followed by the financial costs associated with seeing a physician each year.
- Easier access to care is available via virtual care. More than half of consumers believe that seeing a doctor virtually can deliver easier access to healthcare, and nearly 60% of consumers said they would utilize virtual care if their insurance offered it.
- Virtual care is still viewed as a quick solution. More than 60% of consumers believe that virtual care is a quick solution for one-off instances when you have a cold or sinus infection, with only 20% understanding that you can get treatment via virtual care for most illnesses and conditions treated by primary care physicians.
- Video provides a viable way to build a relationship with a physician. More than 60% of consumers believe you can successfully build a relationship with your primary care physician via video technology. However, 70% do not believe this can be done via text or phone.
You can learn more at http://bit.ly/PrimaryCareReport2019 .
About Doctor On Demand
Doctor On Demand, the nation’s leading virtual care provider, is reimagining what healthcare looks like for today’s world. Doctor on Demand’s nationwide healthcare platform puts the patient first by providing access to board-certified physicians, licensed psychologists and psychologists, and a care coordination team via video visits, voice and messaging. Doctor On Demand has a satisfaction rating of 4.9 out of 5 stars across the iTunes store and Google Play, and has become the virtual care provider of choice for hundreds of enterprise customers, including four of the Fortune 10 companies, and over two dozen health plan partners. Through its mobile application and website, consumers can access quality care in all 50 states with an average wait time of 5 minutes, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Doctor On Demand delivers services through employers, health plans, and directly to consumers. While insurance isn’t required, tens of millions of Americans enjoy covered medical and behavioral health visits, including full mind and body services: preventive care, chronic care, urgent care, and behavioral health.
Doctor On Demand’s mission is to improve the world’s health through compassionate care and innovation. It is headquartered in San Francisco with offices in Minneapolis and Washington, D.C. To access Doctor On Demand, download the app (iTunes or Google Play) or visit www.doctorondemand.com.
SOURCE: Doctor On Demand