As the Affordable Care Act continues to roll out, it is important to keep in mind that multiple physician organizations have warned that the upcoming demand for physicians exceeds the supply.
The Maine Osteopathic Association has been pivotal in attempting to educate the various State and Federal agencies about this. Unfortunately, it has fallen on deaf ears.
A recent article by the Journal of the American Medical Association highlights this present, and worsening, quandary. The conclusion says it all:
"The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) is projected to expand insurance to an additional 25 million Americans. Although these expansions are intended to improve access to care for the newly insured, it is not known whether the primary care system can accommodate the increased demand, nor is it clear whether the system meets current demand. Several studies have raised concerns about our current primary care capacity, particularly for Medicaid patients. Given that access to primary care is considered a prerequisite for improved population health outcomes, a strained primary care system may place many of the goals of the ACA at risk."