The Doctors Are Out
Expect a doctor shortage in coming years:
"This is worrisome," said study author Dr. Colin West, an internist at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. "In the next decade, we will be 50,000 primary-care physicians short for the needs of the country."Repealing the health care law itself might be a good first step...
Compounding the likely shortage is health care reform under the Affordable Care Act, which is expected to flood the system with new patients in the coming years.
"We will need even more primary-care physicians as the foundation of care and we are not generating enough," West said. And, in addition to fewer residents choosing internal medicine and more patients having access to health care, many providers are getting older and heading to retirement.
"The difficulty that many people have already experienced with access to their regular physician will get significantly worse," West said. "Access to primary care is threatened by these numbers if we don't do something about it."