Thursday, May 8, 2008

"Reasons Not To Become A Doctor" on Forbes

"Reasons Not To Become A Doctor" on Forbes

http://www.forbes.com/2008/05/05/physicians-training-prospects-lead-careers-cx_tw_0505doctors.html

A very interesting article that hits some major points about being a physician in modern times.

Here are some excerpts:

Within the next 15 years, the United States will experience a shortage of between 90,000 to 200,000 physicians, according to the recently published Will the Last Physician in America Please Turn Off the Lights: A Look at America's Looming Doctor Shortage...

But there are other significant reasons. They include the increasing costs of medical malpractice coverage, higher practice costs, lower insurance reimbursement rates and insurance-company restrictions resulting in less autonomy over how patients are cared for...


Insurance has become a loaded word. One-third of the country is insured by Medicare, and over the next nine years, the government program plans to cut payments to physicians by about 40%, while practice costs are projected to increase 20%, according to the American Medical Association. The first of those cuts will take place in July, when the reimbursement rate to doctors will drop by 10.6%. The next cut, of 5%, will occur in January...


Meanwhile, getting sued by a patient is a major concern. Of course, doctors who make fatal mistakes and who are unqualified should be held responsible. But there's evidence that the bulk of lawsuits brought are frivolous. Of all malpractice lawsuits brought to jury trial in 2004, the defendant won 91% of the time. Only 6% of all lawsuits go to trial; those that aren't thrown out are settled. Only 27% of all claims made against doctors result in money awarded to the plaintiff, according to Smarr, president of the trade association for medical malpractice companies...

To support that assertion, a 2007 survey by Merritt, Hawkins indicated that 57% of 1,175 doctors questioned would not recommend the field to their children...

You can read some interesting comments by going to the article itself.

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