17 quick notes on healthcare

17 quick notes on healthcare

1. Healthcare has a simple math problem.
The population of the United States is more than 334 million people, and we have 1.1 million active physicians. We are hyper short on primary care physicians and specialists, with one of the lower counts of physicians per capita compared to other developed nations. This one problem spills over to affect most everything else in the industry. The U.S. has one of the lengthiest and most expensive medical school systems in the world that has not kept up with demand nor expanded the number of students it trains, producing about 28,000 graduates per year with about 20,000 MDs and about 8,000 DOs. Additionally, more physicians are retiring or transitioning to part-time practice at earlier stages of their careers than ever before.

2. Healthcare has a power problem.
The largest health insurers are also some of the largest companies in the country by revenue. The largest health systems and provider groups pale in comparison to them and are largely disparate versus concentrated. 

3. Healthcare has a binary thinking problem.
It's not tech or people, it's both. Technology plays an increasingly supportive role for efficiency and accessibility in healthcare, but it will never be able to compensate for the majority of skill, expertise, talent, experience and human touch that powers a health system. As demand for healthcare services continues to mount, exacerbated by our aging population and prevalence of chronic conditions, the importance of a well-trained and adequately staffed healthcare workforce is more pronounced than ever before.

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