As Out-Of-Pocket Health Costs Rise, Insured Adults Are Seeking Less Primary Care

Efforts across the U.S. in recent years to encourage medical students, nurse practitioners and others to go into primary care, especially in underserved areas, are built on a consensus in research: Primary care is good for patients.

"It's the foundation of the health care system," says Dr. Ishani Ganguli, Harvard assistant professor of medicine and physician in general internal medicine and primary care at Brigham and Women's Hospital.

So Ganguli is worried about the results of a big study she and colleagues published Monday in Annals of Internal Medicine: Adults with commercial health insurance are visiting primary care providers less often than they did about a decade ago.

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