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February 12, 1973

How Many Physicians?

Author Affiliations

North Hollywood, Calif

JAMA. 1973;223(7):799-800. doi:10.1001/jama.1973.03220070053023

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To the Editor.—  Despite the fact that I may be accused of naïveté, I would like to submit my personal philosophy with regard to the number of practicing physicians in this country. Now 36 years old, all of my life I remember the image of the physician as one who studied hard, sacrificed, served the community well, and was held in high esteem by his patients and the public in general. I also was aware that physicians fared well economically as a partial reward for their efforts.I cannot accept the fact that I enjoy a handsome income merely because there are not enough physicians and the law of supply and demand applies. It is my impression that my compensation is due to the many years of struggle through college, medical school, residency, and, even now, to the continuing grind of daily practice. The daily grind consists not only of