According to HealthDay News, a study covering millions of children age 17 and younger showed that overall visits to pediatricians in the U.S. fell by 14% from 2008 to 2016, with sick visits dropping by 24%. At the same time, however, well-child preventive visits increased by 10%. Researchers mention increasing out-of-pocket costs and the increased availability of urgent care clinics as possible reasons for the change. A professor of Pediatrics at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine reminds us that while deductibles, copays and co-insurance costs related to sick visits have continued to rise, a growing number of health plans provide 100% coverage for well-child visits.
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