Waiting for Godot….. in Boston

A study of five specialties shows that the wait for a nonurgent appointment in the Boston area has increased in the past five years, and now averages 50 days – more than three weeks longer than in any other city studied……

Average times to get appointments with doctors in Boston ranged from 21 days for cardiologists to 70 days for obstetrician-gynecologists. But when surveyers called, some dermatology and family practice offices said they couldn't get an appointment for a year.

Comments (7)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. Ken says:

    When you increase first-dollar coverage of health care while doing nothing to increase supply, you necessarily create rationing problems. That’s Econ 101 isn’t it?

  2. Linda Gorman says:

    The wait time may vary depending on the payment offered. Theory (and experience) suggests that people willing to pay top dollar in cash can get appointments sooner than, say, Medicaid patients.

    To stay solvent, physicians often allocate only a certain portion of their practice time to low paying patients. In Colorado, for example, Kaiser-Permanente strictly limits the Medicaid patients it will even enroll. The article didn’t say how the survey addressed payment, or how wait times may vary with payment.

  3. eriuqs spires healthy recreation says:

    Good posting…thanks

  4. [...] have more generous coverage. But there was no increase in the supply of physicians. As a result, waiting times to see a new doctor in Boston are twice as long as they are in any other US city; and the number of people going to emergency [...]

  5. [...] are getting no new government subsidy.) Massachusetts cut the number of uninsured in half. But waiting times to see a new doctor in Boston are twice as long as in any other U.S. city and the number of people seeking nonemergency [...]

  6. [...] are getting no new government subsidy.) Massachusetts cut the number of uninsured in half. But waiting times to see a new doctor in Boston are twice as long as in any other U.S. city and the number of people seeking nonemergency [...]

  7. [...] of access to care for people who lack the ability to pay market prices. As previously noted, the wait to see a new doctor in Boston is more than twice as long as in any other U.S. city. Further, the number of people going to [...]