So this isn’t bad news, it’s called “job creation,” and isn’t that the big story?
NY Times: Doctor Shortage Likely to Worsen With Health Law: The Association of American Medical Colleges estimates that in 2015 the country will have 62,900 fewer doctors than needed. And that number will more than double by 2025, as the expansion of insurance coverage and the aging of baby boomers drive up demand for care. Even without the health care law, the shortfall of doctors in 2025 would still exceed 100,000. A study by the Medical Group Management Association found that in 2010, primary care doctors made about $200,000 a year. Specialists often made twice as much.
The Obama administration has sought to ease the shortage. The health care law increases Medicaid’s primary care payment rates in 2013 and 2014. It also includes money to train new primary care doctors, reward them for working in underserved communities and strengthen community health centers.
Demand and the new results based business model for health care might be the solution, with additional changes made when necessary. The idea that the baby boomers would drive up demand should not be a surprise to anyone, hell, we saw this coming for the last fifty years.
What we need is a national health care policy encouraging the training of more physicians. And that’s what the Affordable Care Act provides, for now, until the Republicans decide such forward thinking is best left to the whims of the free market. And that's what we have already, with shortages.