The Real MVPs

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Graduate schools for medicine are selective (no brainer). The typical path to an M.D. usually involves several years’ worth of investment and might look like this:

4 years as a biology major at Johns Hopkins

3 years as medical student at Emory School of Medicine

4 years (on average) of residency and internship

3+ years for specialization

Physicians are expected to total almost 1 million in the United States. According to the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation, there are nearly 4 million active nurses in America. Unsurprisingly, then, nurses lead the pack for healthcare professionals.

But, there seems to be an ongoing debate about a shortage of medical professionals. Is this fact or fictitious? The U.S. Census Bureau estimates the US population to be over 321 million individuals. The sheer volume of patients and files physicians have to manage with competing mandates from payer organizations creates an interesting dynamic.

It’s no secret that new jobs in healthcare constantly creep up. Recent stats from the Department of Labor indicate that for the past year, healthcare jobs continue growing thousands strong.

We know there is almost always a need for physicians housed in regionally-distant areas like the countryside and rural areas. Some advocate for responding to an actual shortage, while others say the market will adjust itself. The hoops to jump through before a medical degree are rather permanent, so maybe this is reality after all.

A recent Wall Street Journal article talked about the condition that occurs when patients drive their doctors crazy.  They say when doctors deal with difficult patients, the care is worse compared to when the patients are easier at cooperation. Maybe problems like these need to take priority before concern over medical staffing.

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