Center for American Progress – Closing the Health Care Workforce Gap

NCHC Writers
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Daniel J. Derksen & Ellen-Marie Whelan

Issue Areas: 

Delivery System ReformsVulnerable PopulationsWorkforce Reforms / Human Capital

Resource Type: 


America’s five million health care professionals directly influence the cost and quality of health care through their diagnoses, orders, prescriptions, and treatments. These primary care and specialist physicians, dentists, nurses, and other medical and dental assistants labor every day to take care of their patients, but experts say there are too few of them today, and by 2020 there will be a shortage of up to 200,000 physicians and 1 million nurses. Rural Americans and those living in other underserved areas across the country are especially vulnerable to these current and growing health workforce shortages.

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