...choosing specialties: I’m heading for the ROAD (radiology, ophthalmology, anesthesia and dermatology).Click here to access the NYT article.
That ROAD has had devastating effects on the physician work force in the United States. While 50 years ago half of all physicians were in primary care, almost three-quarters are now specialists. The future implications are even more dismal. According to one study published last year in The Journal of the American Medical Association, as few as 2 percent of medical students are choosing to step away from the ROAD or from other similar “high prestige” and competitive specialties in order to pursue general internal medicine. The statistic has the power to bring even the best efforts at reform and universal coverage to a grinding halt. Even with other health care practitioners like nurses and physician assistants helping to care for as many patients as they can, universal health care will be doomed if there are not enough primary care doctors.
Thursday, November 12, 2009
At the end of the ROAD?
From the New York Times article "Primary Care’s Image Problem":