Primary care physicians say pervasive and stubborn social barriers such as a lack of access to adequate housing, transportation, and nutritious, affordable food may impact patient health as much as access to direct medical care, a survey shows.
The online survey of 1,000 primary care physicians, including 310 pediatricians, was conducted in September and October on behalf of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
"What really becomes clear is that when you think about providing care, we have to think about more than just the medical service delivery system," Jane Lowe, team director for the Vulnerable Populations Portfolio at RWJF tells HealthLeaders Media.
"We have to think about how do we help physicians connect their patients to other providers or to services that are going to have as much impact on their health outcomes as the physician visit will have?"
They survey found that:
Lowe says the survey reflects a tremendous frustration on the part of primary care physicians who every day see barriers to good health that their patients face in the world beyond the office visit.