December 6 2013
This commentary appeared on The Health Care Blog on December 5, 2013.
Large coverage expansions under the Affordable Care Act have reignited concerns about physician shortages. The Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) continues to forecast large shortfalls (130,000 by 2025) and has pushed for additional Medicare funding of residency slots as a key solution.
These shortage estimates result from models that forecast future supply of, and demand for, physicians — largely based on past trends and current practice. While useful exercises, they do not necessarily imply that intervening to boost physician supply would be worth the investment. Here are a few reasons why.