Physician shortages by the numbers

As physicians increasingly migrate to hospital employment, ASCs could experience firsthand the effects of the looming physician shortage. 

Here are seven key stats on the physician shortage:

1. The U.S. could face a shortage of 37,800 to 124,000 physicians by 2034, according to data released June 11 by the Association of American Medical Colleges. 

2. According to the same report, the country faces a potential shortage of 21,000 to 77,100 nonprimary care specialty physicians by 2034. This includes 15,800 to 30,200 for surgical specialties, as well as 3,800 to 13,400 for medical specialties. 

3. California is expected to experience a shortage of 32,669 physicians by 2030, according to a study published in Human Resources for Health. Here are 10 states predicted to have the greatest shortages of physicians by 2030.

4. More than 2 in 5 active physicians will be older than 65 in the next decade, according to data from the American Medical Association. 

5. About 25 percent of physicians said they made plans for early retirement during the pandemic, according to a Medscape survey, and several others said they have considered leaving medicine.

6. In a 2020 survey, Merritt Hawkins said the pandemic has resulted in a record level of physicians seeking jobs, yet from March 2020 to July 2020, recruitment searches sank 30 percent.

7. The world could face a shortage of 13 million nurses by 2030 without sufficient recruitment and retention efforts, a Jan. 24 report by the International Centre for Nurse Migration in partnership with CGFNS International and the International Council of Nurses found. 


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