Public Health Professionals Essay

906 words - 4 pages

Identify and describe three reasons why there may be a physician shortage rather than a surplus
in the U.S.
William & Torrens (2010) provided a table to show the first time since 1965, between 2000 and 2005, there was a slight decrease in the ratio of physicians per 100,000 civilian populations. The three reasons why there is a physician shortage rather than a surplus in the United States is caused first of all by more restrictive elements that have been blunted due to widespread physician and patient dissatisfaction, particularly with limits of choice (Williams & Torrens, page 270). The move away from more efficient forms of organized medical practice commonly means that more physicians will be necessary to deliver the same level of care (Mick, 2004). Physicians and patients seem to prefer choice to efficiency, which will add pressure for more physicians and is the first of several possible factors fueling fears of a new shortage (Williams & Torrens, page 270). The second reason for the physician shortage in the United States is was a larger percentage of women in medical school. Women still do a majority of the tasks surrounding the raising of children and maintaining a home, leaving less time available for practice (Williams & Torrens, page 270). This demographic shift with the workforce may produce more pressure for more than fewer physicians (Williams & Torrens, page 270). Third, physician preferences now favor a more “controllable lifestyle” (Williams & Torrens, page 270). Young physicians today seek career opportunities with weekends off limiting the hours worked per week. These preferences over time will reduce the availability for patient care (Dorsey, Jarjorua, & Rutecki. 2003).
Identify and describe three factors that contribute to the nursing shortage in the U.S.
Based on what is known about trends in the supply of RNs and their anticipated demand, the shortage is expected to grow slowly until 2010, at which time it will have reached 12 percent and by 2015, the shortage is projected to be 20 percent (Williams & Torrens, page 283). The first contributing factor for the nursing shortage is the issue of nursing school enrollments (Williams & Torrens, page 283). However, the increases have been decreasing steadily since 2003; the facts combined with the estimate made by the federal government that increases in the number of graduates must be around 90 percent to meet the nursing shortage adequately (Williams & Torrens, page 283). The second contributing factor is the aging of the RN workplace (Williams & Torrens, page 284). The contributing factors that caused the nursing shortages are: the decline in number of nursing school graduates, the higher than average age of recent graduating classes and the aging of the existing pool of licensed nurses (Williams & Torrens, page 284). Finally, one of the last reasons for the nursing...

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