Finding a New Doctor Becoming More Difficult for Medicare

By: Chandan Chaturvedi


For some Medicare recipients, the search for a new primary care physician has become more difficult, according to a 2008 survey conducted by the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC). Compounding this trend is an estimate from the American College of Physicians (ACP) that there won’t be enough internists to go around by 2025. The ACP also indicates that current internists are becoming less willing to accept new Medicare patients.
According to Alan Weinstock, an insurance agent at www.MedicareSupplementPlans.com, many physicians are opting out of Medicare due to low reimbursement rates and too much paperwork. With all these trends converging at once, Weinstock believes Medicare recipients need to shop early to find the best doctor—before they turn 65.

“The impact on seniors of physicians opting out of the Medicare program hasn’t been a serious problem yet,” said Weinstock. “But if large numbers of physicians join the group that is opting out, it may be difficult for seniors to have access to affordable health care.”

This is why it is important for the 40 million Americans who have Medigap insurance to start early in their hunt for a physician who has not opted out of Medicare. It is equally important that seniors take the time to determine the best Medicare supplement insurance coverage, since Medicare often does not cover all health care costs.

Even for seniors not affected by the Health Net rate increase, in the current economy it could be beneficial to shop around, since costs vary between plans and insurance companies. Those 65 and older can compare rates, plans and benefits from several prominent insurance companies by visiting websites specializing in Medicare supplement insurance.They can call various insurance companies one by one or to probe the yellow pages for a local health insurance broker, who may or may not have expertise with Medicare supplement insurance plans.

Robert Dowell of Visalia, Calif., understands full well the need to have someone knowledgeable when searching for the best Medicare supplement plan. “It’s traumatic turning 65 and entering an unknown area of new healthcare. So many questions…wondering if you asked the correct ones and were given all the correct facts.” But Dowell found all the answers he needed at www.MedicareSupplementPlans.com and says that now he “has a clear path on how to control my health needs.”

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The author is a business writer .Visit at www.medicaresupplementplans.com to know more about Medigap Insurance

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