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Report: Doctors Not Inundated With Newly Insured Patients

Aired 7/21/14 on KPBS News.

Millions of previously uninsured Americans now have coverage thanks to Obamacare. But a new report finds most doctors haven’t seen a surge in new patient visits.

Millions of previously uninsured Americans now have coverage thanks to Obamacare. But a new report finds most doctors haven’t seen a surge in new patient visits.

The study comes from Athenahealth, a company that provides care coordination and practice management for doctors.

The report examined data from more than 14,000 physicians nationwide.

It found over the first five months of this year, doctors in nearly all specialties saw lower rates of new patient visits, compared to the same period last year.

The only exception was among pediatricians, who experienced a slight uptick.

The report doesn’t analyze the reasons behind these trends. But it suggests that some newly insured patients may be continuing to get care in emergency departments.

Another possibility is that it could take some time for new patients to choose a doctor and schedule an appointment.

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