Healthcare being an important segment in the US economy, it plays a major part. Offering job opportunities for millions of Americans, this industry accounts for trillions of dollars expenditure-wise. However, there is a shortage of physicians already, what with a third of them slated to retire along with the baby boomers who are all fast approaching the retirement age.
As it is 25% of the physicians currently offering healthcare to millions of Americans are not US-born citizens. They comprise a multiple ethnicity and are all immigrants from various countries. With US-born physicians in very short supply, the authorities need to take a more lenient attitude towards immigration in general, and particularly for specific ethnic groups. Currently, the country is in a situation where it faces a shortage of close to 46,000 physicians and is set to touch 90,000 by the year 2025. Not that the authorities are not aware of this, it was predicted as far back as 1990 according to the reports filed by the National Center on Education which foresaw an acute shortage of physicians, and new that only immigrant physicians will be able to fill the shortage.
With primary healthcare bearing the major brunt in the current shortage of physicians, the US-born physicians are no great help. This is because almost all of them wish to specialize, and it is only the foreign born physicians who are willing to fill the gap. One major reason for this is the pay anomaly, where specialists get paid more for their special skills. As it is specialist physicians are paid 45% more than their primary healthcare counterparts. To compound this, while the median pay increased by 16% for specialists while it increased only by 10% for primary healthcare physicians. With screws being tightened on immigration in general, will there be more physician immigrants in the near future?