Results from Weekly Poll About COVID’s Impact on In-Person Visits

During the week of May 18th, 141 ACOs reported on changes in their in-person office visit volume compared with pre-COVID volume levels. This week’s report shows some improvement in visit volume. In particular, the proportion of respondents with in-person visits down by more than 60 percent continued to fall from 16 percent last week to 13 percent this week. The declines remained highest in the Northeast, although the Midwest, which had previously had declines nearly as significant as the Northeast, is now much more in line with the South. Declines reported by hospital-led and physician-led ACOs were similar, although they were slightly larger amongst physician-led ACOs.

This week, NAACOS asked ACOs about steps ACOs have taken to support patients and providers during the COVID-19 pandemic.  The most popular step was to deploy telehealth technology and education for MD visits, with 90% of those surveyed stating that a major effort was underway.  Other popular actions include the implementation of check-in calls with clinically vulnerable patients, check-in calls for patients with complex social needs, and virtual care for COVID-19 patients after discharge. 

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During the week of May 11th, 174 ACOs reported on changes in their in-person office visit volume compared with pre-COVID volume levels. This week’s report shows some improvement in visit volume. In particular, the proportion of respondents with in-person visits down by more than 60 percent dropped from 28 percent last week to 16 percent this week. The declines remained highest in the Northeast followed by the Midwest. Declines reported by hospital-led ACOs were somewhat greater than those for physician-led ACOs.

This week, NAACOS asked ACOs about the proportion of lost in-person visits that had been replaced with telehealth visits. Only 10 percent of respondents reported that they had made up for at least half of their lost visits with telehealth. Seventy percent of respondents reported that they were able to make up fewer than 25 percent of lost in-person visits with telehealth. Most respondents reported that a majority of new telehealth visits included video and a minority were telephone only. Details are provided in the following charts.  

During the week of May 4, 227 ACOs reported on changes in their in-person office visit volume compared with pre-COVID volume levels. About 25 percent of respondents reported a decline of 60 percent or more in in-person office visit volume. Forty percent of respondents reported declines between 40 and 60 percent. Patterns of reported declines in visits were roughly comparable to ACO reports from last week. Declines in in-person visit volume remained highest in the Northeast and lowest in the West. Declines reported by physician-led and hospital-led ACOs were nearly identical. Overall, there was relatively little change compared with the prior week.  

 During the week of April 27th, 154 ACOs reported on changes in their in-person office visit volume compared with pre-COVID volume levels. Nearly one-third of respondents reported a decline of 60 percent or more in office visit volume. Another one-third of respondents reported declines between 40 and 60 percent.  The declines were most notable in the Northeast and the Midwest, where close to half of ACOs reported a decrease of 60 percent or more. The lowest reported declines were reported by ACOs in the West.  Finally, there was also a discrepancy based on ACO type. A larger share of physician-led ACOs reported drops in visits of at least 40 percent compared with hospital-led ACOs (70 percent versus 60 percent). Details are provided in the following charts.