Hospitals are buying out private medical practices, making physicians employees of the hospital corporations. Yet there remain more than a quarter of a million physician practices in the United States. The American Medical Association estimates that more than half the physicians they surveyed in 2013 are self-employed, and 60 percent work in practices owned by physicians. The report contains other data about specialists and family practitioners, but looking forward, the AMA warns the challenges to independently employed primary-care physicians will increase with pressures building in changing payment and health-care delivery pathways.
Medical Economics (medicaleconomics.modernmedicine.com) delineates fifteen greatest challenges facing physicians in 2015. They are formidable, expensive, and time-consuming to overcome and may hasten private-practice physicians and groups down the same path that led to the expiration of independently owned neighborhood pharmacies. Continue reading