Odds are, if you’re 25 or older you can remember some form of independent practitioner. Instead of going to a big hospital to meet with your family doctor for a quick consultation you would go meet your family doctor in an independent office. Before the days of overdocumentation and insurance inflation you could still spend time with your doctor knowing that you wouldn’t be rushed. So, what’s changed in recent years that’s been pushing so many independent physicians to consolidate?
The trends we’ve seen over the last decade are often spearheaded by government reform. When the Affordable Care Act started its life in 2010, it set into motion changes in documentation requirements, greater access to healthcare for those in needs, changes in insurance coverage, billing, and reimbursement, and lots more. These changes made it increasingly difficult for independent offices to stay afloat as reimbursement from insurance dropped while the cost of upgrading to electronic healthcare records and medical devices increased.
Due in part to these changes, physicians are overwhelmingly more likely to be employed directly by a hospital or medical group over starting their own practice these days. In a 2012 article by Mark Smith, president of physician recruiting firm Merrit Hawkins, 60% of first-year residents said they prefer to be employed by a hospital, medical group, outpatient clinic, or academic facility versus a paltry 1% who would prefer to be in a solo practice.
So why do independent practitioners still exist – a deep-rooted belief in quality personal care for the community and the individual needs of every patient. Dr. Okundaye of Neenah has been an independent practitioner since 2002! She believes that patients who actively participate in making their health care decision achieve better results. Her practice offers a convenient and comfortable facility, courteous staff, and a wide range of medical services offered with extended hours.
If you’re ready to feel the difference in intimate healthcare from an independent practitioner, come see what Dr. Okundaye is all about. We’re a part of your community, and we’re here for you!