NEW YORK, NY - Monday, July 27, 2020, The Beryl Institute and Ipsos released its findings from the third PX Pulse, a quarterly tracking survey and a first of its kind effort to elevate understanding and track current perspectives on patient experience in healthcare across the United States. Today’s survey reveals a 26-percentage point drop in the number of Americans reporting a visit to their primary care provider compared to the end of 2019. It also shows significant decreases in the number of Americans visiting a specialist (-18%) or undergoing medical testing (-21%) compared to pre-pandemic levels. While consumers continue to engage in less healthcare activities this quarter compared to last quarter, they remain positive about the overall quality of care they receive in the U.S.
“The results are clear - as the COVID-19 pandemic continues across the country, Americans are forgoing regular medical care at a significant rate,” said Clifford Young, President of Public Affairs for Ipsos. “Fewer Americans are visiting their primary care doctors, they’re not undergoing medical testing, and fewer of us are seeing specialists. While Americans are largely satisfied with the quality of care, the decline in the number of Americans seeking medical care could have significant ramifications down the line.”
In addition to feeling positive about the quality of care, consumers are saying they feel ‘extremely’, ‘very’, or ‘somewhat’ comfortable seeking healthcare services, especially from their primary care provider, specialist, or lab for medical tests. There is less comfort for consumers seeking care at a hospital, the emergency room, or urgent care center, and the level of comfort with care received ranges drastically depending upon race. When rating the quality of care, Black Americans and Hispanic/Latino Americans believe White Americans receive a disproportionately higher quality of care (58% and 37%, respectively).
“The PX Pulse has continued to provide a comprehensive look at consumers view on healthcare, reinforcing the experience they are provided – the safety and quality offered and accessibility and comfort they seek – must remain a top priority for the healthcare sector,” said Jason Wolf, PhD, CPXP, President & CEO of The Beryl Institute. “As we reflect on the first half of 2020, two clear issues emerge around the dual crises in which we find ourselves: first, consumers are forgoing healthcare visits due to fear of exposure to COVID-19 and expressing lower levels of comfort in seeking care in hospitals and urgent care specifically, and second, the elevated conversations on systemic racism and disparities in healthcare in particular reveal a large subset of the American population feels they are not receiving the same quality of care as their White counterparts.”
- Consumers continue to report fewer visits to primary care providers (-17%), hospitals (-3%), labs (-7%), and specialist providers (-5%) compared to last quarter.
- Similar to the past two quarters, cost remains the most important healthcare issue to consumers. The top 3 issues include out-of-pocket costs, health insurance premiums, and having affordable insurance options.
- Over half of the consumers reported feeling “extremely comfortable” or “very comfortable” visiting their primary care provider or specialist provider during the pandemic, while over half we either somewhat or not comfortable at all with visiting hospitals or urgent care facilities.
- A majority of consumers indicated that their doctor provides access to an online portal or app that they can use to access their health information (62%), while they are only sometimes and mostly never used in most cases.
- White consumers are most likely to believe that White people receive care “as expected” (78%). Only 20% of White consumers believe White people receive “better” or “much better” care compared to other groups of people, while Black consumers believe 58% White people receive “better” or “much better” care compared to other groups of people
- Conversely, 45% of Black consumers believe Black people receive “worse” or “much worse” care.
- Over one-third of Black consumers (35%) report personally experiencing discrimination in their healthcare encounters either “sometimes” or “often”.
- Despite the lower engagement in healthcare activities reported since the start of the year, a majority of consumers remain positive about overall healthcare quality (58%) and their own care experiences (74%).
ABOUT THE PX PULSE SURVEY
The Beryl Institute – Ipsos PX Pulse represents a first of its kind effort to elevate understanding of the current perspectives on patient experience in U.S. healthcare.
This effort will regularly capture healthcare consumer perspectives of patient experience in the United States, determine the practices and processes that have the greatest impact and influence on healthcare consumers, and track how the market sees patient experience evolving over time. More information about the core questions that will be tracked each quarter is attached.
ABOUT BERYL INSTITUTE
The Beryl Institute is the global community of practice committed to elevating the human experience in healthcare. We believe human experience is grounded in experiences of patients & families, those who work in healthcare and the communities they serve. We define the patient experience as the sum of all interactions, shaped by an organization’s culture, that influence patient perceptions across the continuum of care.
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Director, Public Affairs, U.S
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