Health Care Professional

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Date Submitted: 09/03/2011 02:26 PM

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Kirstin Wilson

Assignment 4: Health Care Professional

Professor Becky Gilliland


1. Identify and describe three reasons there may be a physician shortage rather than a surplus in the United States. 

First, although managed care remains a formidable force in the organization and delivery of health care, its more restrictive elements have been blunted due to widespread physician and patient dissatisfaction, particularly with limits on choice. 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.

Second, in the early 200s, a historic first was reached in U.S. medical schools. The impact on physician supply is generally thought to be one that will require some-what more physicians to do the same work previously done predominately by men. The reasons for this are clear: Women still do a majority of tasks surrounding the raising of children and maintaining a home, leaving less time available for practice. Taken together this important demographic shift within the workforce may produce more pressure for more rather than fewer physicians.

Third, physician preferences now favor a more “controllable lifestyle.” This factor stems in part from the increasing number of women in the workforce, but it affects men as well. Generally, younger physicians seek a younger lifestyle that allows for weekends off, limits on the number of hours worked per week, and other amenities that allow for activities outside the workplace. Taken together, these preferences have had and will probably continue to have the effect of reducing the amount of time available for patient care.

2. Identify and describe three factors that contribute to the nursing shortage in the United States.

The cause of the nursing shortage is a confluence of factors. These factors include the declining number of nursing school enrollments, aging of the RN...