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Survey: Physician turnover hits new high

March 19 2013

The physician turnover rate rose to 6.8 percent in 2012 from 6.5 percent in 2011, according to a survey by the American Medical Group Association and Cejka Search, the physician search division of healthcare staffing firm Cross Country Healthcare Inc. (NASD: CCRN). This is the highest rate since data was first collected in 2005 and exceeds pre-recession levels.

“The survey findings provide evidence that recruitment and retention continue to be major challenges for health systems,” said Donald Fisher, president and CEO of the American Medical Group Association.

The survey was distributed to medical organizations, representing both American Medical Group Association members and non-members. Data was reported by 80 respondents who collectively employed 19,596 physicians, and a subset of 72 groups who collectively employed 4,213 advanced practice clinicians.

Seventy-six percent of respondents plan to hire more primary care physicians in the next 12 months. Within that group, 22 percent said they will hire “significantly more” — more than twice the 9 percent reported in 2011.

Hiring plans for APCs will also accelerate in the coming year. Sixty-seven percent of survey respondents plan to hire more nurse practitioners, compared with 49 percent in 2011. And 61 percent plan to hire more physician assistants compared with 48 percent in 2011.

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