Long search for Medicare doc for Vancouver couple

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VANCOUVER, Wash. (AP) -- When a couple in their 70s moved from Florida to the Vancouver area four years ago one of the first things they did was look for a primary care physician.

It was a long search for Helen and Rick Gill. They found few doctors accepting new Medicare patients.

Some Clark County doctors told The Columbian (http://bit.ly/oqCMe4 ) the reimbursements from the government often don't cover the costs.

Finding a doctor is especially difficult for seniors who are newcomers. The president of the Washington State Medical Association, Dr. Douglas Myers, says most doctors will continue to see existing patients who become Medicare eligible but won't see new ones.

The Gills finally found a doctor at the Urgent Medical Clinic at Salmon Creek, but it is no longer accepting new Medicare patients.

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Information from: The Columbian, http://www.columbian.com