As the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (PHE) continues, the ABC Board of Directors is studying the impacts on all ABC credential holders. In order to get a clear picture of the impact the emergency has had on ABC stakeholders, a preliminary survey was sent in April 2020 to a small group of ABC certifees, to set an early benchmark on how the pandemic was affecting the profession.
ABC followed up with a survey in July 2020 to a much larger, diverse and representative subset of all ABC certified individuals. The survey goals were to ascertain the effects felt both at the height of the pandemic and identify the steps being made towards recovery. The July survey focused on identifying impacts on employment, patient volume and practice revenue.
Patient volumes are returning. When individual clinicians were asked about the pandemic's effects on their clinics' operations, 85% confirmed there was a reduction in the number of patients. Since the peak of the crisis, 65% report seeing an increase in patient visits, with the majority (53%) returning to 75-100% of pre-pandemic levels.
Nearly all (93%) of the Path 2 owner/managers reported a moderate-to-severe reduction in patient visits at the height of the crisis. Today, 73% see a clear increase, with the majority (56%) reporting a return to 50-75% of pre-pandemic patient levels.
Employee work hours are increasing. More than half (57%) of individual practitioners reported that their work hours were reduced at some point during the PHE. Now, 75% report they are once again working full-time hours.
Financial impacts on clinics is less than anticipated. When asked to describe the financial impact to date, nearly two-thirds of owner/managers reported seeing a mild or moderate (10-50%) drop in revenue. This is a significant departure from the initial survey, where 57% of the respondents stated that they anticipated a high-to-severe (50%-plus) drop in revenue. In both surveys about 5% of respondents reported no anticipated or realized drop in revenue due to the pandemic.
View the full survey report.