Today the Institute of Medicine (IOM) released a report, Graduate
Medical Education That Meets the Nation's Health Needs, containing
recommendations to improve the graduate medical education (GME) system.
Specific attention was given to find ways to increase the capacity of
the nation's clinical workforce to ensure the delivery of high quality
health care that will meet the needs of our diverse population. The
Surgical Coalition, representing more than 20 professional societies and
approximately 250,000 surgeons and anesthesiologists in the United
States, appreciates the 2-year long effort to develop the report.
The country faces a severe physician workforce shortage that will only
worsen as health insurance coverage is expanded to millions of Americans
and the baby boomers continue to reach retirement age. Overall, by the
year 2025, the shortage will approximate 130,600 physicians - 64,800
specialists (including surgeons) and 65,800 primary care physicians -
reflecting an equal shortage of specialists and primary care physicians.
This shortage has a number of consequences that jeopardize patient
access to surgical care, including:
Members of the Surgical Coalition include: American
Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, American Academy
of Ophthalmology, American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck
Surgery, American Association of Neurological Surgeons, American
Association of Orthopaedic Surgeons, American College of Osteopathic
Surgeons, American College of Surgeons, American Pediatric Surgical
Association, American Society for Metabolic & Bariatric Surgery,
American Society of Anesthesiologists, American Society of Breast
Surgeons, American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery, American
Society of General Surgeons, American Society of Plastic Surgeons,
American Urogynecologic Society, American Urological Association,
Congress of Neurological Surgeons, Society for Vascular Surgery, Society
of American Gastrointestinal and Endoscopic Surgeons, Society of
Gynecologic Oncology, and The Society of Thoracic Surgeons.
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