Yesterday, athenahealth and Sermo released our Physician Sentiment Index℠ (PSI). With over 1,000 physicians polled, the national survey is thought to be the largest of its kind. While many of the findings will come as no surprise to physicians in practice, the messages are nevertheless alarming. Key findings include:
- 64% cited the current healthcare climate as somewhat or very detrimental to their delivery of quality care
- Only 22% are optimistic about the ability of the American physician to practice independently or in small groups
- 59% are of the mind that the quality of medicine in America will decline in next five years; only 18% believe the quality of medicine will improve
- The majority (54%) strongly disagree/disagree that more active government involvement in healthcare regulation can improve outcomes; less than a quarter feel otherwise
- A shift from fee-for-service to pay-for-performance gives hope to almost half (49%) who think it will have a very/somewhat positive impact quality of care but;
- 53 percent believe pay-for-performance will have a negative/very negative impact on the effort required to get paid
Working with athenahealth and THCB, Sermo plans to publicize these findings to help the general public understand what is really happening in our healthcare system today and establish a sentiment indicator that can generate longitudinal trend data in this area. In the next phase of the athenahealth-Sermo relationship, we’ll be building off these findings to explore ways that physicians can run their practices more efficiently and level the playing field with insurers.
Daniel Palestrant, MD is the Founder & CEO of Sermo, Inc. A frequent contributor to THCB, his work also appears on the FtF blog at Sermo.com, where this piece first appeared.