NJ Likely to Face Physician Shortage

Side Note: New Jersey is having a hard time attracting new physicians to its state and for good reason. In an era when practicing medicine is hard enough –with looming Medicare cuts, administrative headaches like transitioning to electronic medical records, the cost of physician liability coverage along with the constant threat of med mal lawsuits, and massive student loans –New Jersey needs to do what it can to make itself more appealing to young physicians.

A 2009 study conducted by the New Jersey Council of Teaching Hospitals predicted that by 2020 the state will be 2,800 doctors short. The study was an exit survey of New Jersey medical school residents and found that only 32% of them planned on staying in the state and setting up a medical practice there. This number was down from 50% in recent years, which was still considered low.

In short, New Jersey is not very financially welcoming to new physicians. First, when compared to other states, New Jersey lags in its Medicaid reimbursement rates. The rates have only been increased once or twice in the past fifty years and are low compared to other states. Second, New Jersey is not known for its loan repayment programs. Third, New Jersey is a high tax state. With so many financial burdens that new physicians face, having to pay high taxes on what you do end up making is the final blow. On top of all of that, New Jersey also has a reputation for having a lot of red tape in general for physicians. Finally, New Jersey could benefit from tort reform. Currently, there are no limits on med mal damages in the state. However, the one piece of good news is that New Jersey med mal policy premiums have generally been holding steady or slightly decreasing over the past few years.

Would you like to lower your New Jersey liability insurance rates? If so, complete our free, no-obligation quote request today.

N.J. faces growing shortage of doctors due to med school costs, insurance concerns
Published: Sunday, February 06, 2011, 8:36 PM Updated: Monday, February 07, 2011, 1:34 PM from NJ.com
By Robert Stern/For The Times

New Jersey faces a widening shortage of physicians within the next nine years, without reforms that improve the business environment to practice medicine in the state and funding to help make medical school more affordable, health-care industry experts are warning.

“New Jersey’s business and health-care leaders must partner with our legislators and key policymakers to make our state a friendlier environment for our physicians,” said Patricia Costante, CEO of Lawrence-based malpractice insurance provider MDAdvantage.

Original article can be found here.

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