Michiana residents scrambling to find primary care doctors

GRANGER, IND. -- Most people are used to having to wait a little to see the doctor but now your wait might not just be in the waiting room. 

Kelly Tomaszewski said she panicked when she got sick and couldn't get an appointment with her doctor.

"I have been sick for four days and my doctor can not see me for two weeks," said Tomaszewski.

Tomaszewski doesn't have time to wait because she has two children and she has to get back to work.  Primary Care Physician Matthew Teters said many people in Michiana have this same problem.

"It's fairly common to have a waiting list for new patients to establish with primary care physicians and that is mainly because there is a shortage of primary care doctors in this area," said Dr. Matthew Teters.

Dr. Teters said many people choose specialties instead of becoming primary care doctors for financial reasons and scheduling. With the universal health care plan on the horizon and giving more people insurance, this problem could get much worse.

"The new legislature will probably lead to an influx of new patients into the area, therefore there needs to be physicians to take care of those patients," said Matthew Teters, MD.

He said there is an upside to universal healthcare.  It will cap salaries for specialty doctors, which could encourage more med students to pursue primary care instead.  Kelly said she sure hopes so.

"I would rather go to my family doctor that knows my past history," said Tomaszewski.

Because she wants piece of mind knowing that when she gets sick, her doctor will be there to help.

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