The United States will not have nearly enough physicians to treat everybody who needs treatment in the coming years. By 2030, there will be a deficit of between 40,800 and 104,900 doctors, according to a report by the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC). What makes this worse, say researchers, is that the population of Americans 65 or over will have grown by 55% by then.
“During this period, the U.S. population is projected to grow by close to 12%, from about 321 million to 359 million,” the study states. “Because seniors have much higher per capita consumption of health care than younger populations, the percentage growth in demand for services used by seniors is projected to be much higher than the percentage growth in demand for pediatric services.
For primary care, the shortfall could reach 43,100 physicians, according to the AAMC. For specialists, it could reach 61,800.