Thursday, July 12, 2012

Are 83% of Medical Doctors considering leaving medicine?

Aaron Carroll rightly argues that any such claim is silly:

Let’s get past even that. Let’s just take the top line result. Does it pass the smell test? Do you really believe that 83% of doctors are considering quitting because of the ACA? Do you really believe that only 17% of docs are NOT considering quitting? Really? Anecdotally, I’ve heard of no physicians whatsoever who are quitting; I work with a lot of docs. But let’simagine my experience is abnormal. Remember that about 20% of physicians make an earning placing them in the top 1% of the country. Medicine, above any other profession, is more likely to earn you that much. This survey would have you believe that more than 80% of us are willing to throw all that away, just because of the ACA.
Notice that this implies that medical doctors would have to be complete and utter morons in order to do this.  And over ACA?  Now, I could imagine a scenario in which medicine was becoming less attractive as a career path and some doctors might have decided they would have been better off as MBAs, for example -- ignoring whether they could have been a successful MBA even if they had wanted to.

Heck, would not the MA experiment have shown these kinds of effects if 83% of MDs were honestly considering leaving? 

Why can't we have a press corp that would make fun of such an unlikely claim? 

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