Close to 90% of Plastic Surgeons Worry About How Obamacare Will Affect the Specialty

More than 88% of aesthetic doctors are concerned about how the Affordable Care Act will affect the practice of plastic surgery, and up to one-third may retire early as a result of these changes, according to a new online poll conducted by Plastic Surgery Practice.

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New York, New York (PRWEB) February 24, 2014

More than 88% of aesthetic doctors are concerned about how the Affordable Care Act will affect the practice of plastic surgery, and up to one-third may retire early as a result of these changes, according to a new online poll conducted by Plastic Surgery Practice.

Most respondents were worried that reimbursement rates would be reduced so dramatically that they would have trouble paying their own bills as a result. There was also concern that there would be an influx of nonqualified practitioners providing aesthetic procedures at cut rates to increase their revenue stream, which could compromise patient safety.

The new results were released during a Plastic Surgery Practice webinar held on February 24, 2014.

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) is commonly referred to as Obamacare, health care reform, or the Affordable Care Act (ACA). It was signed into law to reform the health care industry by President Barack Obama on March 23, 2010, and was upheld by the US Supreme Court on June 28, 2012. Its rollout has been fraught with hiccups, but several key provisions have already been enacted with more to come through 2022. The intentions of the law are to provide affordable health care for all Americans while reducing overall health care costs, but there have been, and likely will continue to be, some unintended consequences.

The poll also found that there is a growing fear of technology, which is part and parcel of health care reform. To receive Medicare and Medicaid payments, a physician must demonstrate “meaningful use” of an electronic medical record system. While close to 45% have already transitioned from paper charts to computerized systems, more than 40% have not, the survey showed. Of these, 80.5% have no plans of investing in an EMR system largely because of cost and concerns about privacy.

The survey was sent to plastic and reconstructive surgeons, facial plastic surgeons, dentists, oral and maxillofacial surgeons, dermatologists, dermatologic surgeons, cosmetic surgeons, and oculoplastic surgeons who subscribe to Plastic Surgery Practice magazine.

Fully 70.3% of respondents are board-certified plastic surgeons, and about 9% are facial plastic surgeons. Overall, slightly more than 67% of respondents perform both reconstructive and cosmetic procedures, and 65% take both private insurance and Medicare. Close to 45% of practices that take insurance do not plan to work with carriers on the health care exchanges (the state or federal-run online health insurance marketplaces).

About the Poll
The online poll was conducted via Survey Monkey in January 2014. There were 101 respondents in total.

The webinar can be viewed at http://www.plasticsurgerypractice.com/webinar-affordable-care-act.

For more information about the new poll or to speak with the PSP editor or a member of our advisory board about the results, please contact:

Press Contact:

Amy Di Leo
Associate Editor
adileo(at)allied360(dot)com
(516) 987-8491


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