June 29, 2020

Declines in patient visits during COVID-19 projected to cost primary care $15 B

By: Judy Mathias

Editor's Note

Harvard Medical School researchers are projecting that primary care practices will lose more than $15 billion by the end of the year.

Because of the steep decline in office visits and fee for service payments from March to May, primary care practices are expected to lose more than $65,000 in revenue per full-time physician in 2020, or $325,000 per typical 5-person practice.

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This loss could balloon substantially if telemedicine payment rates revert back to pre-COVID-19 levels towards the end of the year.

For many primary care practices, especially those serving vulnerable populations, these losses could be catastrophic, with many practices forced to close, the researchers say.


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