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Residency Program Insider, November 15, 2013

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An aging population. An increasing number of patients with multiple chronic diseases, such as obesity and hypertension. More Americans with access to health insurance under the Affordable Care Act.

These are a few of the factors leading to the projected shortage of more than 90,000 physicians by 2020, Atul Grover, MD, and Lidia M. Niecko-Najjum write in a November Health Affairs commentary.

Grover, chief public policy officer for the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) and Niecko-Najjum, a senior research and policy analyst at the AAMC, make a case for increasing the number of residency positions funded by the federal government. The AAMC represents medical schools and teaching hospitals. 

New models of delivering healthcare, expected to alleviate the projected physician shortage, haven’t materialized yet, the authors write.

“In the meantime, to avoid impediments to access, it would be prudent to increase the number of resident positions that Medicare partially supports,” Grover and Niecko-Najjum write.



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