A report in "Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association" projects a dangerous shortage of cardiothoracic surgeons in the U.S.A. in the near future.
A study undertaken by the Association of American Medical Colleges' Center for Workforce Studies found the demand for cardiothoacic surgery services is projected to increase by 46 percent by 2025 while the supply of these surgeons is expected to decrease by 21 percent during that period.
Dr. Irving L. Kron, the senior author of the study, said, "The U.S. population is growing by 25 million people a decade and the over-65 population is projected to double between 2000 and 2030. Even if there were an immediate increase in the number of residents entering training, we would likely see an overall decline in the supply of cardiothoracic surgeons over the next 20 years."
A shortage of these specialists, he said, could result in patients experiencing significant waiting time before getting needed surgeries. This could lead to unnecessary complications and deaths.