Study: 31% of Physicians Refused New Medicaid Patients in 2011

Roughly 31 percent of physicians in a sample of 4,326 said they would not accept new Medicaid patients in 2011, with most attributing this decision to the payor's low reimbursement, according to a new study published in Health Affairs.

Though 96 percent of physicians accepted new patients last year, 17 percent wouldn't accept new Medicare patients, and 18 percent would not accept new privately-insured patients.

The study found physicians in smaller practices and those in metropolitan areas were less likely than others to accept new Medicaid patients. Higher state Medicaid-to-Medicare fee ratios were also a factor, as they were correlated with greater acceptance of new Medicaid patients.

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