Colorado To Face Shortage Of Physicians

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Shortage Of Colorado Physicians

One-third of Colorado physicians are ages 55 and older, and theireventual retirements likely will lead to a provider shortage andproblems with access to care for state residents, according to a reportrecently released by the Colorado Health Institute, the Denver Post reports.

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Thereport, the "Physician Workforce Survey," included responses from 5,158of the 16,000 physicians licensed to practice in Colorado. According tothe report, 38% of respondents identified themselves as primary carephysicians -- those who practice pediatric, general, internal or familymedicine -- and 90% said that they practiced in cities or suburbs.

CHIPresident Pamela Hanes said, "We have a whole generation of practicingphysicians who are now on the cusp of retirement, and we don't know whois coming in behind them," adding, "We don't see a lot of youngphysicians choosing primary care practice."

Tim Fry, manager of government affairs at the National Rural Health Association,said the report highlights a national trend. "We're facing a work forceissue nationwide in rural and urban areas, but the physician shortagesare going to show up earlier and more acutely in rural areas," he said,adding, "We see a continued movement to specialty care and to urbanareas" (Human, Denver Post, 7/31).
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Reprinted with permission fromkaisernetwork.org.You can view the entire KaiserDaily Health Policy Report, search the archives, andsign up for email delivery at kaisernetwork.org/email. The Kaiser Daily Health Policy Report is published forkaisernetwork.org,a free service of The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation.

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