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To the Editor.—
A few months ago, you published in the Archives an editorial pointing out that the greatest shortage of physicians exists in the teaching body of the medical schools. This obviously is a rather complex problem; however, I would like to point out that part of it is caused by a cultural syndrome that, for want of a better name, I would like to call gerontophobia. It is not surprising that it exists in a civilization where the total accent is on youth. Nevertheless, the nearly iron-clad rules of medical schools, with retirement ages between 65 and 68 years, deprive the medical schools of a valuable resource. There are enough of us who, after a lifetime of practical experience, would like to communicate our knowledge to the next generation. However, we find the doors locked completely. I do not believe this makes sense.
Bornstein FP. Gerontophobia. Arch Intern Med. 1976;136(1):118. doi:10.1001/archinte.1976.03630010096022