Jeff Rowe, Editor, Future Care

Jeff Rowe is the editor of Future Care and a veteran healthcare journalist and blogger who has reported extensively on initiatives to improve the healthcare system at the local, regional and national level.

Poll: Americans place high value on relationship with primary docs

May 24, 2017 AT 12:00 AM

Whether from the possible excesses of healthcare reform, or the unintended consequences of more technology, there’s been a lot of talk in recent years about the threatened doctor-patient relationship.

Through it all, however, a new survey indicates that Americans are as keen as ever on having a relationship with a physician who knows their health background and family and medical history.

Conducted on behalf of the Health is Primary campaign from Family Medicine for America’s Health (FMAHealth), the survey found 86% of Americans agreed that primary care leads to healthier patients, higher quality healthcare and lower costs, AKA the “Triple Aim” of healthcare.

The poll of about 22,800 registered voters was conducted online from February to April and also found the following:

• 88% said it's important to ensure coverage for preventive and wellness care to keep patients healthy

91% said it's important that healthcare is affordable

• 85% said physicians should be paid based on the value of the care they provide and not on the number of procedures they perform

"A recent Oregon study showed that for every $1 invested in primary care, $13 in downstream costs were saved. We hope this tool will help us show that there is broad national support to invest in the nation's primary care infrastructure,” said FMAHealth Board Chair Glen Stream, M.D., former AAFP president, in an announcement.

FMAHealth was created in 2013 by the AAFP and seven other national family medicine organizations to engage primary care health professionals, patients, policymakers and other key stakeholders to drive continued improvement of the U.S. health care system and spotlight the value of primary care.