Physician shortages: Appointment wait times average nearly 4 weeks in large cities

The time it takes to schedule a new patient physician appointment in 15 major metropolitan areas increased by 8 percent since 2017 and by 24 percent from 2004, according to Merritt Hawkins' 2022 "Survey of Physician Appointment Wait Times and Medicare and Medicaid Acceptance Rates."

The survey suggests that it takes an average of 26 days to schedule a new patient physician appointment in 15 of the largest U.S. cities, up from 24.1 days in 2017 and up from 21 days in 2004.

"Physician appointment wait times are the longest they have been since we began conducting the survey," Tom Florence, president of Merritt Hawkins, AMN Healthcare's physician search division, said in a Sept. 12 news release. "Longer physician appointment wait times are a significant indicator that the nation is experiencing a growing shortage of physicians."

The survey includes data from 1,034 physician offices in 15 metropolitan areas: Atlanta, Boston, Dallas, Denver, Detroit, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, Minnesota, New York City, Philadelphia, Portland, San Diego, Seattle and Washington, D.C.

Click here to access the Merritt Hawkins report.

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