Black medical professionals are on trial. In the Senate To help fill the gap created by a health care workforce shortage that could result in fewer than 100,000 physicians leaving the U.S. over the next decade.
But black doctors are citing major barriers to entering and remaining in the industry, including a “broken” system with mounting debt, inequitable compensation, lack of investment in black medical students and abuse of medical professionals. The covid-19 pandemic.
“Our system is broken, and we, as residents, are underpaid for the time we spend saving lives while paying for our own safety,” Morehouse School of Medicine resident physician Samuel Cook said during the roundtable discussion. By Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt. Atlanta-based school.
“For too long, we’ve been mired in a health care system that clearly, and clearly, abuses our mandated investments in this field, and it’s time for our plight to be heard, appreciated and acted upon,” Cook continued.
What is the crisis?
As of 2011 Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), there will be an estimated physician shortage of 124,000 physicians by 2034. The demand for doctors is expected to outstrip the supply of doctors due to the aging of the US population.
About 230,000 healthcare professionals — physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, physical therapists and licensed clinical social workers — will leave the industry in the fourth quarter of 2021, according to a 2022 report from a company that tracks healthcare data and analytics.
Mental, physical and emotional burnout from the Covid-19 pandemic has forced medical professionals to leave the profession to avoid the risk of an unprecedented medical crisis.
“Hospital administrators treated RNs and other hospital workers as an expense during the pandemic, not caring whether we lived or died, refused to provide life-saving personal protective equipment until forced to, and now wonder why nurses fled the bedside” Registered Nurse and National Nurses United President Deborah Berger said in a statement to Yahoo News.
Studies suggest that 47% of health care workers will leave their jobs by 2025. Sanders wants to address concerns that the United States may be unprepared for another pandemic due to shortages.
“We do not have the public health infrastructure we need in the state. We really don’t have the doctors and nurses we need.” Sanders said. During the table discussion. “So what we’re trying to do now is pass legislation that creates more doctors and more nurses, more dentists.”
What is the difference between black doctors?
Currently, black doctors work Only 5.7% Physicians in the US
The AAMC says one reason for the lack of black doctors can be traced back. Flexner’s Report of 1910; It has been commissioned by the American Medical Association and the Carnegie Foundation to establish a gold standard for medical training. The report led to the closure of more than half of America’s medical schools in the early 1900s. This includes five of the seven historically black medical schools.
“The shortage is particularly acute in rural and medically underserved communities,” said Janet E. Southpole, MD, chief executive officer and provost at Mercy Medical College in Nashville.
Meharry Medical College is one of four historically black medical schools. Like AAMC, HBCUs less than 3% Of all MD-degree-granting institutions, however, they turn out more than half of all black graduates in the medical field.
The epidemic has exposed chronic health care disparities in minority communities, such as access to treatment and premature death due to underlying conditions, with a disproportionate burden on black and brown communities.
“With a long-standing commitment to educating health care professionals from diverse backgrounds, HBCU medical schools are designed to address diverse challenges,” said Dr. Valerie Montgomery Rice, president of Morehouse School of Medicine. He told CNN..
What is the solution?
Sanders said more efforts are needed to attract diverse candidates to the medical profession by creating a pipeline from high school through college. But black physicians and heads of black medical schools want to make sure black medical professionals are prepared for success.
Many schools supported the bipartisan congressional proposal, Resident Physician Shortage Reduction Act of 2023, which would increase Medicare-funded housing by 14,000 over seven years. The school leaders support the plan.
Sanders proposed Canceling $1.6 trillion in student loan debtHe said it would “cut the racial wealth gap in young Americans by more than half” and “free up doctors and nurses to work in communities that need care.”
In addition, the Congressional “Practice Pathway” proposal and National Medical Corps Act scholarship programs prioritize HBCUs, minority-serving institutions (MSIs), and underserved communities.
The AAMC also encourages increased federal investments in MSIs to address student debt and expand medical schools for medically underrepresented students.
“But we owe it to the country to increase the diversity of the students that the more than 150 other medical schools train beyond the four black medical schools,” Rice emphasized, to help reduce inequities in disadvantaged communities.
Health care professionals also support efforts to reduce burnout, an issue that Congress has sought to address Act of 2022 Aimed at improving mental and behavioral health.