Jason L. Parks: http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasonlparks/5139930960/
The average amount of time spent in a waiting room was down from 2011, but it's expected to trend upward in the long-term.
Next time you head to a doctor's appointment, make sure to bring something to read. Patients in D.C., Maryland and Virginia report spending more time in the waiting room on average than the rest of the nation.
- Virginia ranks in 30th with an average wait time of 20 minutes, 36 seconds
- D.C. ranks 32nd, with an average wait time of 20 minutes, 38 seconds
- Maryland ranks 36th, with an average wait time of 21 minutes, 15 seconds
This information comes from the 2012 annual report by Vitals.com, a doctor review site which aggregates patient reviews and rankings of doctors and hospitals.
The average wait time for all 50 states was 20 minutes and 15 seconds, a decrease from 21 minutes last year. The shortest state average physician wait time, however, increased by more than a full minute from the previous report in 2011.
The supply of qualified doctors remains unchanged, which combined with the additional 30 million Americans now required to have health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, is likely to contribute to longer wait times in the future, according to the Vitals.com report.