FRIDAY, June 26, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Huge declines in patient visits during the coronaviruspandemic have slashed U.S. primary care doctors' revenues, a new study finds.

As a result of decreases in office visits and fees for services from March to May during the pandemic, a full-time primary care physician will lose an average of more than $65,000 in revenue in 2020.

Overall, primary care practices nationwide stand to lose nearly $15 billion, according to the study led by a team from Harvard Medical School in Boston.

"For many primary care practices, particularly those serving the most vulnerable populations, these losses could be catastrophic, with many practices being forced to close," study author Dr. Sanjay Basu, a faculty affiliate at Harvard's Center for Primary Care, said in a university news release. "This could weaken the U.S. health system dramatically at a time when we need it to be at its strongest."

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