CONSHOHOCKEN, Pa., Sept. 28, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- As the growth of urgent care centers and retail clinics continue to surge, the personal touch a primary care physician (PCP) brings to the relationship counts, according to a new study of over 1,700 U.S. adults who have a primary care physician. The study was conducted earlier this year by Harris Poll on behalf of Mercy Health System of Southeastern Pennsylvania.
The personal relationships between PCPs and their adult patients (defined as U.S. adults ages 18 or older who have a PCP) is a strong bond, with nearly six in 10 adult patients (59 percent) believing their PCPs care about them, while nearly half (49 percent) believe their PCP knows them personally. The data show positive indications that PCPs have an edge on alternative care providers.
Three out of four adult patients (75 percent) know the name of their PCP, however the same cannot be said for those adult patients who have visited the following facilities: very few know the name of a care provider who most recently treated them at a retail health clinic (15 percent), urgent care center (12 percent) or free clinic (8 percent).
Adult patients also highlighted areas of discontent with their PCPs. Nearly two thirds of adult patients (61 percent) would go to an urgent care center rather than their PCP for non-urgent health issues; among those, they cite the following reasons:
- If making an appointment with their PCP was too much of a hassle (41 percent)
- If their actual PCP is not always available to see them when they come in for an appointment (34 percent)
- If their PCP's office is not conveniently located (30 percent)
- If there is a long wait once in their PCP's office (28 percent)
"We wanted to enhance our understanding of dynamics that affect interactions between patients and their PCPs," said William J. Strimel, DO, President, Mercy Physician Network. "The research findings show that both patients and physicians need to work harder to communicate to take advantage of the benefits offered by the more personal relationships patients can enjoy with their PCPs."
This survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Poll from February 1–3, 2017 among 2,175 adults ages 18 and older, among whom 1,735 have a primary care physician. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated.
SOURCE Mercy Health System of Southeastern Pennsylvania