The Doctor Will See You….When!?
Say you’ve got a suspicious-looking mole that you want to get checked. Or you look at the calendar and realize that it’s been well over a year since your last mammogram. So you hop on the phone to make an appointment, only to be told that the doctor can see you…in nine weeks.
According to a study by Merritt Hawkins & Associates, a physician recruitment firm, that’s a pretty typical scenario these days. They conducted a nationwide study and found that when it comes to seeing a medical specialist, same-day service is a rare thing indeed. Over a 16-month period, the company made over 1,000 phone calls across five medical specialties—family practice, cardiology, dermatology, obstetrics/gynecology, and orthopedic surgery—in 15 major metro cities. In each call, they asked when the next available appointment might be for a standard check-up or another type of non-emergency care. Here are the results:
- Boston—50 days
- Philadelphia—27 days
- Los Angeles—24 days
- Houston—23 days
- Washington, D.C.—23 days
- San Diego—20 days
- Minneapolis—20 days
At Sprig, we don’t think good health should have to wait. And in cases where a timely diagnosis is critical, you can’t afford to wait. That’s why we partner with over 160 local providers and publish their available appointments online so you can see exactly when they have an opening. If you need to be seen right away, you can often find same-week, even same-day appointments, often at earlier or later times that are more flexible for your schedule. For instance, today is Wednesday, May 2nd. A quick check on SprigHealth.com reveals that if I wanted to get a mammogram, four different providers could see me Friday. A dermatologist? Four different providers could see me today. (One could even see me within the hour!)
That’s great news for individuals who want great health care sooner rather than later.
What’s the longest you’ve had to wait to see a doctor?