Below are the results from a statewide effort to survey physicians in Louisiana. The results reflect 1,049 responses.

We truly value the information provided by Louisiana physicians and appreciate the help and candidness in answering what are sometimes uncomfortable or awkward questions. Contributions like this are invaluable and extremely important in allowing the Louisiana State Medical Society (LSMS) to continue to serve the physicians of our great state.

We understand that you are more than a physician. You're an individual, with responsibilities outside of your practice. Through advocacy, collaboration, communication, and education, the LSMS works to ensure that your ability to practice medicine is maintained and supported. Participation in surveys such as this one assists us in that task and help us remain the trusted advocate for physicians across the state. Take advantage of a membership focused on you; take advantage of a membership with the LSMS.

Click here to access the LSMS Physician Resource Center for COVID-19 for additional information including our COVID-19 e-blasts.

 




 





 





 

If you or anyone you know is experiencing difficulty and need resources, please visit the LSMS physician resilience page by clicking here.














Below are open-ended questions and the most frequent responses by survey participants:


The views expressed in the comments below are not official LSMS statements and should not be taken as such.


What do you wish you knew then that you know now? (534 total responses)

  • How little PPE is produced in the United States and how truly dependent we are on the integrity of other countries for these supplies.
  • That the pandemic was going to last this long.
  • I wish I were more aware of how completely unprepared our health system, policy makers and general political structure is to cope effectively with a pandemic of this nature.
  • Anticoagulation and steroids help!
  • Everyone should have been encouraged to wear mask from outset of pandemic
  • I wish I had known how to better conduct a telemedicine assessment and visit.
  • That the virus poses a limited threat to the young and healthy.
  • Accuracy in transmission manner, severity of disease, more in prevention measures, more about treatment.
  • How politically motivated medicine is even to the point of studies design.
  • Harmful effects of patients ignoring significant acute/chronic illnesses out of fear of covid-19
  • How much this would affect not only physical health but mental health
  • I still don't know the false positive rate {sensitivity} and specificity false negative rate
  • What our public health officials and government officials knew.  There was very little information about this virus before it got here. 

 

What would you do differently? (520 total responses)

  • I would have had a stockpile of PPE and cleaning supplies.
  • Based on the unknown nature of COVID 19 virus, I can’t think of much that could have been done differently.
  • Earlier mask wearing recommendation or mandate.
  • I would not have closed my practice as the initial response to the pandemic to cancel all elective and non-urgent procedures was an overreaction.
  • Encouraged more colleagues to speak out against the shutdown of elective procedures
  • Turn off the news. Have every parish have a pandemic response team. Provide support to front line workers (work hour restrictions to protect physicians from burnout, protect pay/reimbursement, PPE, support staff, eliminate unnecessary administrative positions that do not focus on front line care, provide childcare for front line employees, loan repayment)
  • Not mixing medicine and politics
  • Not send the children home from school.  Virtual no low risk of morbidity / mortality.  Allow businesses to stay open with appropriate distancing, etc.

 

What advice would you give to policy makers today? (636 total responses)

  • Everyone’s risk is not the same - quit trying to treat them that way......be honest about reasons to wear masks etc...
  • Stop playing politics and act in the best interest of the people
  • Continue to recommend masks.  Businesses need to stay open with precautions. Closed businesses are killing people.
  • The shutdown of medical procedures did nothing to help public safety and did far more harm to patients
  • Keep the most vulnerable safe, and do not shut down medical care again, do not allow employers to make their own rules about returning to work.
  • Take the advice of your physician, physician-lead care is where we need to be.
  • Re-open everything.  Absolute "safety" is imaginary. The virus exists in the world now and cannot be sequestered.  A vaccine is likely a pipe dream. The draconian lock downs are killing otherwise healthy people financially and emotionally.
  • When COVID became political everyone lost.
  • STOP listening to doctors who have NOT treated a patient in 50 years and listen to the doctors who actually TREAT patients
  • Do not let media and uninformed public opinion affect your decisions.

 

What do you feel you need that is not being done or offered? (558 total responses)

  • Access to same day point of care results for both antigen and antibody testing.
  • Adequate stockpiles of readily available PPE.
  • Increased financial assistance for private practice physicians.
  • Common sense and reasonable decision making from government, insurance companies, and others.

 

Is there anything else that has not been included in this survey that you believe would be beneficial for us to know? (374 total responses)

  • Would recommend assigning individual test numbers that would identify those with multiple COVID tests
  • The LSMBE’s policy to threaten doctors with license suspension for elective procedures was an overreach.
  • Will everyone be able to get the vaccine? Will insurance and/or Medicare cover it?
  • A house divided against itself cannot stand.
  • Telemedicine needs to be a continued covered service to our patients.
  • More than ever, given the way employed physicians can be "pushed around", there needs to be a state law that abolishes restrictive covenants.
  • Better communication and more efficient reporting of COVID-19 data and statistics from the Governor and state.
  • The State of Louisiana needs a plan, not a better plan, just a plan.