Outpatient visits return to levels seen before pandemic, report finds

Patient visits for outpatient care have rebounded to levels seen before the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new report from the Commonwealth Fund.

The report is based on data from the healthcare technology company Phreesia and includes outpatient visits to 1,600 healthcare organizations between Feb. 1 and Oct. 10. The organizations included in the report represent more than 50,000 clinicians nationwide. 

Outpatient visits were down 58 percent in late March compared to baseline levels seen in the first week of the month. The report shows outpatient visits rebounded and were 2 percent above baseline on Sept. 6. As of Oct. 4, these levels were right at baseline. 

Despite an overall rebound, visit trends still vary by several factors. Visits for younger children and visits to specialists, such as pulmonologists and behavioral health providers, are still below the prepandemic baseline.

View the full report here.

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