The Washington Post/Kaiser Health News (6/2, Boodman) reports that "doctors are encountering more patients struggling to pay for care," and as a result, some physicians are now "selectively cutting their fees or devising novel payment arrangements." These physicians "say they feel a responsibility to help strapped patients," and "some say assisting patients pays dividends in the form of loyalty, which will benefit them once the economy recovers." Meanwhile, "others have taken a harder line on billing and are sending more overdue accounts to bill collectors" as they face "rising overhead and static reimbursements." But, "whether the downturn will lower physicians' incomes this year remains to be seen." According to "a survey by Sullivan, Cotter, and Associates…doctors' incomes increased an average of four percent last year, despite the souring economy."