'I wish we could see our vet instead': Patient burnout grows

Healthcare experiences defined by long wait times, rushed visits with overworked clinicians and high bills are disillusioning U.S. patients, TIME reported Feb. 27. 

Patients have long been dissatisfied with certain elements of their healthcare journeys, but data suggests these frustrations have magnified amid the pandemic. In 2019, 43 percent of Americans reported being unsatisfied with the U.S. healthcare system, an Ipsos survey found. In 2022, just 12 percent of U.S. adults said healthcare was handled "extremely" or "very well" in the U.S., according to a separate poll from the associated Press–NORC Center for Public Affairs Research. 

Jen Russon, a mother of two from Florida, said her family pays $400 a month for insurance in return for what she feels are rushed and underwhelming healthcare visits. 

"I wish we could see our vet instead, because they really spend a lot of time" with her pets, she told TIME.

Physician burnout, which also increased amid the pandemic, further complicates this issue, according to Bengt Arnetz, MD, PhD, a professor at the Michigan State University College of Human Medicine who studies primary care. 

"Providers feel stressed, burned out, less empathetic. A lot of times they don't engage the patient, and the patient wants to be engaged," he told TIME.

Read the full article here.

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