In the addresses before medical meetings and in the papers in the medical literature today one sees more and more concern over the shortage of specialists certified by the various specialty boards. Many of these utterances imply that this shortage indicates an inadequacy of medical care now available. Our purpose in this presentation is to point out a trend toward the concept that only specialists are qualified to treat patients, to question the validity of this concept and to present a plan to halt or reverse this trend. It is not our purpose to question the importance of highly trained specialists in the treatment of patients: simply to question the necessity of their treating all patients.
For convenience of discussion the system of the practice of medicine in which the patient has no choice of physician, in which supervision of the physician in charge of a patient is exercised authoritatively
THOMPSON SA, THOMPSON SB. THE STATUS OF THE GENERAL PRACTITIONER, PRESENT AND FUTURE. JAMA. 1946;131(6):514-518. doi:10.1001/jama.1946.02870230020005