The U.S. healthcare system is facing a shortage of Physicians in many medical specialties and practice areas. But the problem is especially severe in obstetrics and gynecology.
The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) projects a shortage of up to 8,800 Obstetricians and Gynecologists (OB-GYNs) by 2020, and a shortfall of up to 22,000 by 2050. In fact, the ACOG estimated in 2017 that half of the U.S. counties lack a single OB-GYN.
A report from Doximity shows the areas with the highest and lowest risk of shortages.
The areas with the highest risk of shortages:
1. Las Vegas
2. Salt Lake City
4. Riverside, CA
5. Los Angeles
6. Buffalo, NY
7. Jacksonville, FL
The areas with the lowest risk of shortages:
1. Portland, OR
2. San Jose, CA
3. San Francisco
4. Charleston, NC
5. Birmingham, AL
8. Hartford, CT
9. Louisville, KY
While OB-GYNs are a primary source of care to women during pregnancy and delivery, they also provide a wide range of gynecological care throughout women’s lives. From reproductive cancer screenings to preventive services, the ACOG recommends many women visit their OB-GYNs at least once a year. The ACOG’s predicted shortages would have a significant and negative impact on women’s healthcare in the U.S.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), reported that the number of births in 2018 fell 2% from 2017, the lowest number of births in 32 years. For millennial women, this drop is particularly pronounced; birthrates for women aged 25-29 in 2018 fell 3% from 2017 while birthrates for women aged 20-24 decreased 4% during the same time period.
To view the full report, click here.