Physician shortage is for real

You may have seen tons of coverage lately, including President Obama’s comment about it in the context of the ‘universal’ coverage that some people want. Universal coverage how? With a looming shortage of BOTH primary care and surgical specialists, it seems hard to imagine how coverage will be provided. Extenders can close the gap in some areas of primary care but not enough. Certainly, they will not be able to provide surgical specialty care. The NYT and many other papers have highlighted the problem. The Boston Herald stated “ Doc shortage looms in Mass." "is here" . Only 13% are under 35.” % of physicians over age 55 is currently around 44%, according to the AMA. About a third are contemplating changing careers and others retiring early (assuming the market recovers!) 
Our book titled “The coming shortage of Surgeons: Why they are disappearing and what that means for our health”will be published by Praeger Publishing in the fall of this year. 
Our presentation at the American Surgical Association April 23rd. "The Estimated Cost of Training the Future Surgical Workforce". "is here" . 
Comment: My advice to young residents is to take heart despite falling reimbursements. The supply/demand equation should work in their favor, provided the market is allowed to work. The last part of the statement is a huge qualifier, meaning IF the federal government keeps its hands off healthcare. Will it? Unlikely.