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Claims that the current physician resource shortage is due to the reduced work effort of physicians are misleading and ignore important trends, namely the demographic changes within the profession, the growth in non-physician spending that has outpaced spending on physicians and the relative decline in spending on physician services over the past 20 years. Such data make it difficult to support Evans’s and McGrail’s (2008) assertions, which distract from more fruitful policy discussions about eliminating the current shortage of physicians, integrating non-physician health providers into medical practice and otherwise meeting the growing demand for health services.

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"An Honest Tale Speeds Best, Being Plainly Told": Another Look at Health Spending and the Supply of Physicians

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