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USA's 1 million-doctor shortage upon us...

MickeyW

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The doctor is disappearing in America.

And by most projections, it’s only going to get worse — the U.S. could lose as many as 1 million doctors by 2025, according to a Association of American Medical Colleges report.

Primary-care physicians will account for as much as one-third of that shortage, meaning the doctor you likely interact with most often is also becoming much more difficult to see.

America’s million-doctor shortage is right around the corner - MarketWatch
 

Greenbeard

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The doctor is disappearing in America.

And by most projections, it’s only going to get worse — the U.S. could lose as many as 1 million doctors by 2025, according to a Association of American Medical Colleges report.

That's an inaccurate characterization of the document they link to, which clearly says there will be more physicians in 2025:

Although physician supply is projected to increase modestly between 2013 and 2025, demand will grow more steeply.

The problem isn't that doctors are disappearing or being "lost," it's that our population is aging. So the expected increase in doctors isn't enough to keep up with the needs of an aging population in AAMC's estimation.
 

Crovax

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How is it even possible to be 300k primary care physicians short? That many could service nearly the whole country. People need to stop being such hypochondriacs.
 

OrphanSlug

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I read a good deal of MarketWatch material, but that is some questionable journalism right there.

"And by most projections, it’s only going to get worse — the U.S. could lose as many as 1 million doctors by 2025, according to a Association of American Medical Colleges report."

The link in that statement does not say that. (I've included it here below.) All it says is demand will not be fulfilled based on our aging trends.

https://www.aamc.org/download/426260/data/physiciansupplyanddemandthrough2025keyfindings.pdf

What it says is what we have known for sometime now about the strain on the current process to become a doctor and then the business model of a doctor's practice. We already know there is a shortage of doctors in the area of primary care and several specialty disciplines, and it is well covered material that the debt one needs to acquire just to become a doctor is absurd. Another factor is ACA greatly accelerated the mechanism between primary care doctors and Insurance Companies putting downward pressure on the fees for a doctor's practice. Basically, a demand issue is artificially coupled with a business model issue.

"The primary-care gap is particularly acute in about one-third of states, which have only half or less of their primary-care needs being met."

"We pay for procedures, drugs and expensive tests, but we don’t pay doctors to think and care and manage patient health-care problems."

With baby-boomers going into retirement, something like 12000 per day retire, will place upward strain on the system where we seemingly take the primary care physician and pay them less but expect them to care for more.

The issue at hand now is finding more doctors to get through a costly 7-8 year process, including internship, to then convince them go to into the lowest paid area of medicine... join (or start) a family practice as a primary care doctor. The government screwed around in this so much that everyone else got something but the very group we need to ensure we get more of.

On the lighter-side... Healthcare Insurance companies are showing record profits, and their CEOs are making a fortune. Check Anthem.
 

jaeger19

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I read a good deal of MarketWatch material, but that is some questionable journalism right there.

"And by most projections, it’s only going to get worse — the U.S. could lose as many as 1 million doctors by 2025, according to a Association of American Medical Colleges report."

The link in that statement does not say that. (I've included it here below.) All it says is demand will not be fulfilled based on our aging trends.

https://www.aamc.org/download/426260/data/physiciansupplyanddemandthrough2025keyfindings.pdf

What it says is what we have known for sometime now about the strain on the current process to become a doctor and then the business model of a doctor's practice. We already know there is a shortage of doctors in the area of primary care and several specialty disciplines, and it is well covered material that the debt one needs to acquire just to become a doctor is absurd. Another factor is ACA greatly accelerated the mechanism between primary care doctors and Insurance Companies putting downward pressure on the fees for a doctor's practice. Basically, a demand issue is artificially coupled with a business model issue.

"The primary-care gap is particularly acute in about one-third of states, which have only half or less of their primary-care needs being met."

"We pay for procedures, drugs and expensive tests, but we don’t pay doctors to think and care and manage patient health-care problems."

With baby-boomers going into retirement, something like 12000 per day retire, will place upward strain on the system where we seemingly take the primary care physician and pay them less but expect them to care for more.

The issue at hand now is finding more doctors to get through a costly 7-8 year process, including internship, to then convince them go to into the lowest paid area of medicine... join (or start) a family practice as a primary care doctor. The government screwed around in this so much that everyone else got something but the very group we need to ensure we get more of.

On the lighter-side... Healthcare Insurance companies are showing record profits, and their CEOs are making a fortune. Check Anthem.

Bingo.
 

SocialD

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I read a good deal of MarketWatch material, but that is some questionable journalism right there.

"And by most projections, it’s only going to get worse — the U.S. could lose as many as 1 million doctors by 2025, according to a Association of American Medical Colleges report."

The link in that statement does not say that. (I've included it here below.) All it says is demand will not be fulfilled based on our aging trends.

https://www.aamc.org/download/426260/data/physiciansupplyanddemandthrough2025keyfindings.pdf

What it says is what we have known for sometime now about the strain on the current process to become a doctor and then the business model of a doctor's practice. We already know there is a shortage of doctors in the area of primary care and several specialty disciplines, and it is well covered material that the debt one needs to acquire just to become a doctor is absurd. Another factor is ACA greatly accelerated the mechanism between primary care doctors and Insurance Companies putting downward pressure on the fees for a doctor's practice. Basically, a demand issue is artificially coupled with a business model issue.

"The primary-care gap is particularly acute in about one-third of states, which have only half or less of their primary-care needs being met."

"We pay for procedures, drugs and expensive tests, but we don’t pay doctors to think and care and manage patient health-care problems."

With baby-boomers going into retirement, something like 12000 per day retire, will place upward strain on the system where we seemingly take the primary care physician and pay them less but expect them to care for more.

The issue at hand now is finding more doctors to get through a costly 7-8 year process, including internship, to then convince them go to into the lowest paid area of medicine... join (or start) a family practice as a primary care doctor. The government screwed around in this so much that everyone else got something but the very group we need to ensure we get more of.

On the lighter-side... Healthcare Insurance companies are showing record profits, and their CEOs are making a fortune. Check Anthem.


Whatever the number I am inclined to think that primary care, not specialists, will decline. why do primary care when you can specialize and make more money im sure is what alot of them are thinking.
 

jet57

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The doctor is disappearing in America.

And by most projections, it’s only going to get worse — the U.S. could lose as many as 1 million doctors by 2025, according to a Association of American Medical Colleges report.

Primary-care physicians will account for as much as one-third of that shortage, meaning the doctor you likely interact with most often is also becoming much more difficult to see.

America’s million-doctor shortage is right around the corner - MarketWatch

Here's the real reason:

$1 million mistake: Becoming a doctor - CBS News

the cost of becoming a doctor has soared, with higher education expenses leaving the average newly minted physician with $166,750 in medical school debt, while average salaries are declining. Nearly one-third of doctors -- 28 percent - saw a cut in pay last year, according to NerdWallet's research.

That little fact always seems to be missing from the conversations. Educations are getting like buying a house.
 

MickeyW

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MickeyW

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Whatever the number I am inclined to think that primary care, not specialists, will decline. why do primary care when you can specialize and make more money im sure is what alot of them are thinking.

Yes, it's a no brainer really...sad for those of us who just require minimal care....
 

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Yes, it's a no brainer really...sad for those of us who just require minimal care....

Truth. your stuck at a clinic waiting room for two hours around sick people.
 

Winchester

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The doctor is disappearing in America.

And by most projections, it’s only going to get worse — the U.S. could lose as many as 1 million doctors by 2025, according to a Association of American Medical Colleges report.

Primary-care physicians will account for as much as one-third of that shortage, meaning the doctor you likely interact with most often is also becoming much more difficult to see.

America’s million-doctor shortage is right around the corner - MarketWatch

Demographics are a bitch.
 

Helix

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i used to work at a med school, and the debt incurred can be crushing. if we're worried about not having enough doctors, maybe that's a bottleneck that we could address.
 

ludin

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How is it even possible to be 300k primary care physicians short? That many could service nearly the whole country. People need to stop being such hypochondriacs.

because of the AMA and government limit the number of doctors allowed to go through school.
they figure the shortage because people that need primary doctors continue to grow.

frankly this doesn't surprise me. doctor pay and the risk is simply not worth it anymore.
we have hamstrung the industry so bad that they only way they can really make money is to specialize.
 

jet57

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i used to work at a med school, and the debt incurred can be crushing. if we're worried about not having enough doctors, maybe that's a bottleneck that we could address.

Yeah, for baby boomers like myself, our family doctors had nowhere near the hurdles that they have today. Health care was state of the art for the times, appointments were easy and the nurses dressed like nurses. The bill for my birth was $240.00.

It's the cost of health care that's driving us to the moon with the ACA and all of the crazy insurance rates. We've created our own Frankenstein with the free market and now it's destroying the lab that it was built in.
 

MickeyW

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Truth. your stuck at a clinic waiting room for two hours around sick people.

Some are for sure. I make an appt. and get in usually within a week, and the normal wait time in the waiting area is 15 minutes give or take. And my health care pro is kinda cute to boot.

Demographics are a bitch.

Can be.

i used to work at a med school, and the debt incurred can be crushing. if we're worried about not having enough doctors, maybe that's a bottleneck that we could address.

I understand ...but it won't happen this year.

because of the AMA and government limit the number of doctors allowed to go through school.
they figure the shortage because people that need primary doctors continue to grow.

frankly this doesn't surprise me. doctor pay and the risk is simply not worth it anymore.
we have hamstrung the industry so bad that they only way they can really make money is to specialize.

Yep.

Yeah, for baby boomers like myself, our family doctors had nowhere near the hurdles that they have today. Health care was state of the art for the times, appointments were easy and the nurses dressed like nurses. The bill for my birth was $240.00.

It's the cost of health care that's driving us to the moon with the ACA and all of the crazy insurance rates. We've created our own Frankenstein with the free market and now it's destroying the lab that it was built in.

My last two children were born in the early 80s. My Dept. had excellent insurance and each of them cost me $69 out of pocket.
 
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jet57

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Some are for sure. I make an appt. and get in usually within a week, and the normal wait time in the waiting area is 15 minutes give or take. And my health care pro is kinda cute to boot.



Can be.



I understand ...but it won't happen this year.



Yep.



My last two children were born in the early 80s. My Dept. had excellent insurance and each of them cost me $69 out of pocket.

Right, but what was the cost to insurance, and what do pay for rates?

Both of my kids were born in the eighties as well, my out of pocket, for a private room both times was about what you paid I don't remember, but I didn't have to pay anything off in the way of a running balance, that I do remember.

Insurance is one of the major reasons that costs are so high. I have a slight rosacea problem; it's from sun exposure. I take an anti inflammatory - Solodyne: it costs me $35 for a 30 day day supply. The uninsured price is $1200 for a 30 day supply, and that's at Costco!

The free market's been rippin us all off for a generation now.
 

Helix

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Yeah, for baby boomers like myself, our family doctors had nowhere near the hurdles that they have today. Health care was state of the art for the times, appointments were easy and the nurses dressed like nurses. The bill for my birth was $240.00.

It's the cost of health care that's driving us to the moon with the ACA and all of the crazy insurance rates. We've created our own Frankenstein with the free market and now it's destroying the lab that it was built in.

i don't argue that the market shouldn't have a role, but i really think that we need to look at health care systems in other first world countries that are working more efficiently. for example, Canadians wouldn't trade us health care systems.
 

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i don't argue that the market shouldn't have a role, but i really think that we need to look at health care systems in other first world countries that are working more efficiently. for example, Canadians wouldn't trade us health care systems.

that implies america has a healthcare system similar to 1st world nations already, when in fact america has a 3rd world healthcare system, america should look towards second world countries like cuba

Most Americans may still view Cuba as largely a sugar producer. But the new reality is that Cuba’s principal export is human capital — doctors and teachers.

Consider what Cuba is doing in Brazil. Thanks to left-leaning President Dilma Rousseff, more than 5,000 Cuban doctors participate in the Mais Medicos (More Doctors) program, which helps relieve the massive shortage of healthcare services in Brazil’s rural, often remote areas. The program is highly successful with low-income Brazilians, many of whom now receive quality medical attention where there was none before.

Cuba?s biggest export is teachers, doctors ? not revolution
 

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<snip>

My last two children were born in the early 80s. My Dept. had excellent insurance and each of them cost me $69 out of pocket.
You didn't get a 'repeat customer' deal on the 2nd? :2razz:
 

Helix

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dimensionallava

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i don't really agree. maybe a Canadian / French sort of healthcare system would be better.

if you "could" vote for that system in an election, i might agree with you but, there would need to be massive changes and improvements made over several years possibly decades, before america would be anywhere near a first world healthcare system.

somalia and countries like them, don't have a poor healthcare system because they've been voting wrong
 

Helix

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if you "could" vote for that system in an election, i might agree with you but, there would need to be massive changes and improvements made over several years possibly decades, before america would be anywhere near a first world healthcare system.

somalia and countries like them, don't have a poor healthcare system because they've been voting wrong

our healthcare system isn't comparable to Somalia's, but it could definitely be significantly improved.
 

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Med school has become beyond elitist, it's really for the wealthy now, unless you don't mind going into crushing debt. They only have so few seats every year. The med school here in western Canada takes only 100 seats per year. 100! It's crazy. They keep the doctor supply artificially low so that the cost per patient can be more profitable. They claim it's about quality control but I seriously doubt it. We have high skilled doctors from foreign countries that the government has made it next to impossible to re-certify. I think this province only takes 23 foreign doctors per year, and they must go through great lengths and pay big money to re-certify in Canada. The rest just... I dunno? Learn to drive taxis?

As the article mentions, it's not a supply problem but a demand problem. The number of high-needs patients will be increasing sharply with the retirement population and there won't be enough doctors to take them all on, but that could be remedied by changing how doctors are created. The U.S. is a bit more lenient about re-certifying foreign doctors, but not much more. The restrictions strike me as a way to make sure the domestic schools can maximize profits.
 

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i don't really agree. maybe a Canadian / French sort of healthcare system would be better.

sorry I don't feel like waiting a year to see a doctor.
 

jaeger19

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i used to work at a med school, and the debt incurred can be crushing. if we're worried about not having enough doctors, maybe that's a bottleneck that we could address.

Its one thing. the other thing is the way healthcare is being delivered. There is less independence of practice. More pressure to be "productive".. less time with patients, etc.

Heck.... being a physician is going the way that teaching has gotten.

Teachers used to be respected members of the community. Highly educated people that were thought to provide a valuable service. Now? Much maligned as overpaid, lazy, "can't do" people

Medical providers were respected members of the community. highly educated people that were thought to provide a valuable service. Now? Much Maligned as "greedy, overpaid, worthless.

(until you need them).
 
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