Persistent shortage of primary care, specialist physicians found in New York state

ALBANY, N.Y. — A new report indicates that a shortage of physicians could adversely affect the implementation of healthcare reform.

Calling the shortage "persistent," the Healthcare Association of New York State found that more than 1,200 physicians are needed statewide, excluding New York City, and nearly one third of that need is for primary care doctors. The finding was based on HANYS' 2012 physician advocacy survey, which HANYS developed in collaboration with the Iroquois Healthcare Alliance, the Nassau-Suffolk Hospital Council, the Northern Metropolitan Hospital Association, the Rochester Regional Healthcare Association and the Western New York Healthcare Association.

"As thousands of New Yorkers are expected to gain health insurance coverage during the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, our hospitals and health systems already indicate a dramatic need for primary care physicians throughout the state," HANYS president Daniel Sisto said. "New York state must have a comprehensive strategy to address this shortage and ensure all New Yorkers have access to care."

Sisto said that while his group supports initiatives like the state Department of Health's creation of the Office of Primary Care and the Medicaid redesign process, more programs, such as Doctors Across New York, must be appropriately funded to attract the hundreds of physicians needed in under-served areas. Meanwhile, physicians across all specialties continue to be needed as well, as 32% of healthcare facilities have had to either reduce or eliminate services due to the shortage, and 75% of respondents north of New York City indicated that emergency departments sometimes had no coverage for certain specialties, resulting in a need to transfer patients to other hospitals.


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Comments

It takes a lot of sacrifice

It takes a lot of sacrifice to be in this profession, before you are accepted in this degree you have to submit an excellent personal statement writing and be able to pass the university interviews and study for about ten years. It’s unfortunate our politicians took this “health care” approach. They took a system that need to be tweaked to reduce health care costs, improve health care, and improve access to health care & basically made it into a disaster by assuring mandated customers to the health insurance industry. Costs could have easily been reduced by increasing the number of doctors trained, providing a tax credit for health care maintenance costs and encouraging primary care clinics. It takes a lot of sacrifice to be in this profession, before you are accepted in this degree you have to submit an excellent personal statement writing and be able to pass the university interviews and study for about ten years.