Survey: many primary care doctors ready to scale back work or quit

November 19, 2008

Most primary care physicians feel they are working at maximum or have too much work, and nearly half plan to cut back on patient volume or quit their profession altogether, according to survey results from the Physicians' Foundation.

Most primary care physicians feel they are working at maximum or have too much work, and nearly half plan to cut back on patient volume or quit their profession altogether, according to survey results from the Physicians' Foundation.

Survey results from 12,000 primary care doctors were included for analysis. Seventy-eight percent of physicians said they believe there is a shortage of primary care doctors in the US. More than 90% said that over the past three years, the time they devote to non-clinical paperowkr has increased; 63% said this has reduced the time they are able to spend with each patient. Seventy-six percent said they are working at full capacity or are overworked.

In addition, 49% said that over the next three years, they plan to reduce the number of patients they see or stop practicing medicine entirely, and 60% of respondents said they would not recommend medicine as a career.

The full report can be accessed on the Physicians' Foundation Web site.