Managed Care Outlook

Is the degree of restriction on choice of care overstated?


Americans made 787 million trips to the doctor in 1997, more than half of which were visits to primary care physicians. According to the National Center for Health Statistics, about 15 percent of all outpatient visits to physicians involved a referral from another physician or a health plan. Only 1 in 10 required authorization, and just over 11 percent were capitated.

SOURCE: NATIONAL AMBULATORY MEDICAL CARE SURVEY: 1997 SUMMARY, CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL AND PREVENTION/NATIONAL CENTER FOR HEALTH STATISTICS, ATLANTA, 1999

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