The AAFP reported on a recent study outlining the projected family doctor shortage that is facing our nation. According to the organization, “The projections rely on a combination of factors to gauge current and future workforce needs on a state-by-state basis, focusing heavily on increased patient demand that is likely to result from an aging population, overall population growth and coverage expansions due to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.”
The projections are very specific. For example, according to the projection for Arizona, the state demands an additional 1,941 primary care physicians by 2030. This is 150 percent of the current number of doctors. According to the research, 1,466 primary care physicians are needed because of population growth, 360 because of increased utilization, and 115 because of insurance expansions that occur as part of the Affordable Care Act.