Are we seeing the beginning of the end of the independent physician? Between July 2015 and July 2016, U.S. hospitals bought up 5,000 independent physician practices, according to research conducted by Avalere Health for the Physicians Advocacy Institute, a not-for-profit organization that grew out of a settlement of litigation against for-profit insurers alleging unfair payment practices. In 2012, about 14% of practices were owned by hospitals. Four years later, that percentage had more than doubled to 29%.
Source: Physicians Advocacy Institute, “Updated Physician Practice Association Study: National and Regional Changes in Physician Employment, 2012–2016,” March 2018