COGME's 16th report to congress: Too many physicians could be worse than wasted

Robert L. Phillips, Martey Dodoo, Carlos R. Jaén, Larry A. Green

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Departing from past reports, the latest Council on Graduate Medical Education (COGME) report warns of a physician deficit of 85,000 by 2020 and recommends increases in medical school and residency output. COGME notes that contributions of other clinicians and changes in how medical care is delivered in the future would likely offset physician deficits but chose not to modify their recommendations. COGME offers a relatively minor workforce correction in an otherwise flawed system of health care; however, the nation awaits a reassessment of its physician workforce based on what the nation wants and needs from physicians working in modern systems of care. Great caution should be exercised in expanding the physician workforce. Producing a physician surplus could be far worse than wasted, because the investment required and resulting rise in health care cost may harm, not help, the health of people in the United States. Instead, these resources could be applied in ways that improve health.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)268-270
Number of pages3
JournalAnnals of family medicine
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2005


  • Delivery of health care
  • Education, medical, graduate
  • Health manpower
  • Health planning organizations
  • Health services research
  • Physicians, family/workforce

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Family Practice


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