Dr. Selene Parekh is an orthopedic surgeon at Duke's North Carolina Orthopaedic Clinic in Durham. This time of year is normally busy for hospitals all over the country, but he said this year is different.
"We're seeing an all-time high," said Dr. Parekh.
He explained patients are suddenly overwhelming the system with requests for surgeries and appointments, partially because of the Affordable Care Act.
"They don't know what the out-of-pocket expenses will be and what the premiums will be," Dr. Parekh said.
His office is completely booked for the next three weeks, which is the volume they normally see in December.
This is also compounded by the normal end of the year rush from patients. After having met their deductibles, many are now trying to get any other elective surgeries in, since their health care plan will foot the bill.
As for the current complications with the Affordable Care Act, he explained it's all about adapting.
"It's the law of the land. So, whether you like it or not you got to learn to adapt," Dr. Parekh explained.
Dr. Parekh believes hospitals and clinics will only see more requests in the coming months. He said there is real concern if all patients will be able to get the care they are looking for.
His advice is to be patient, as many hospitals and clinics are trying to accommodate all the requests.