Baby Boomer Generation + AMA = A Shortfall of Doctors

The cover story in this morning's USA Today provides a brilliant report of just one of the more unexpected consequences of our existing, failed health care paradigm: A shortfall of doctors. That flies in the face of estimates by the American Medical Association who predicted in 1994 a glut of some 165,000 physicians by 2000 and worked to limit the number of new doctors.

New studies are predicting, as the baby boomer generation -- 79 million strong -- reaches retirement, the shortage of physicians will become even more acute. In addition to the 25,000 doctors trained annually in this country, studies have estimated as many as 10,000 more are needed to meet the expected demand.

Even more frightening: Because it takes a decade for a doctor to be trained, unless things change very soon, the shortfall of doctors 15 years from now could reach 200,000! Funny thing is, there are about 800,000 physicians practicing medicine these days, representing a 60 percent increase from just 20 years ago. But many of them are being kept busy with such nonsense as liposuction or bariatric procedures.

Would this nation be suffering from a shortfall of doctors if the standard health care paradigm focused more on treating the true causes of illness, rather than wasting precious time and money "curing" symptoms?

If you're not sure about the answer to that question, take a look at an article I posted last summer about the amazing number of doctors and unnecessary tests it took to treat a little boy's sore throat pain. And all he did was swallow a fish bone. Imagine what could happen to you...

USA Today March 2, 2005

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