Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act: promise and peril for primary care

Ann Intern Med. 2010 Jun 1;152(11):742-4. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-152-11-201006010-00249. Epub 2010 Apr 19.


The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) of 2010 brings both promise and peril for primary care. This Act has the potential to reestablish primary care as the foundation of U.S. health care delivery. The legislation authorizes specific programs to stabilize and expand the primary care physician workforce, provides an immediate 10% increase in primary care physician payment, creates an opportunity to correct the skewed resource-based relative value scale, and supports innovation in primary care practice. Nevertheless, the peril is that the PPACA initiatives may not alter the current trend toward an increasingly specialized physician workforce. To realize the potential for the PPACA to achieve a more equitable balance between generalist and specialist physicians, all primary care advocates must actively engage in the long rebuilding process.

MeSH terms

  • Delivery of Health Care
  • Health Care Reform / economics
  • Health Care Reform / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • Humans
  • Insurance, Health, Reimbursement
  • Primary Health Care / organization & administration*
  • Primary Health Care / trends
  • United States
  • Workforce