Sunday, September 1, 2013
People hoping for changes in Medicare are alleging that the program is suffering because of the small amounts of money from the government. As a result, many believe that doctors are not willing to serve Medicare patients. These concerns have been voiced for years and commonly exaggerated.
These rumors have been demolished by new analysis completed by experts at the Department of Health and Human Services. The analysts compiled seven years worth of data and found that the percentage of doctors taking new Medicare patients has risen from 87.9% in 2005 to 90.7% in 2012. Additionally, Medicare patients have comparable even better access to medical services. Despite these statistics, a small number of doctors have dropped out of Medicare program. About 9,500 practicing doctors have opted out of the Medicare program. However, the percentage of doctors opting out of Medicare is small in comparison to those who are have decided to continue to take Medicare patients. Moreover, there are thousands of non- doctor providers that supplement them as well.
See The Editorial Board Doctors and Their Medicare Patients, New York Times, Aug. 31, 2013.
Special thanks to Brian Cohan (Attorney at Law, Law Offices of Brian J. Cohan, P.C.) for bringing this article to my attention.