The Association Of American Medical Colleges Responds To Phillip Longman’s “First Teach No Harm”

Atul Grover | Washington Monthly | July 3, 2013

The AAMC is very disappointed that Mr. Longman did not contact the AAMC for information or comment when he was writing his article. We are writing to clarify a number of important points that his article fails to reflect.

- The AAMC supports an increase in both the number of primary care physicians and the number of specialist physicians. Our most recent policy position on the physician workforce calls for an increase in 4,000 federally supported residency training positions, divided equally between primary care and specialty physicians.

- The need for increasing the number of primary care and specialty physicians has been documented by both the AAMC Center for Workforce Studies and the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). According to AAMC projections, the doctor shortage is nearly evenly split between primary care physicians (45,000) and specialists (46,000). In a 2008 analysis, HRSA also projected a growing shortage across the entire physician workforce, with a shortfall of 35,000 surgeons and 27,000 medical specialists by 2020. [...]