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October 9, 1943


JAMA. 1943;123(6):363. doi:10.1001/jama.1943.02840410045014


HOW MANY PHYSICIANS ARE NEEDED  The United States Public Health Service has made a questionnaire study on medical conditions in the District of Columbia, Baltimore City, certain Maryland counties and Georgia.1 The average weekly patient load is shown in the following table:The averages, however, are somewhat deceptive, as they vary greatly according to age. Physicians under 45, especially those from 35 to 44 inclusive, care for two to three times as many as those above 64 years of age. The number of patients that can be seen naturally varies with the proportion of office and home visits. With considerable variation the average office hours in Baltimore for physicians are between four and five, while in the counties outside they are about an hour longer. The same difference exists between urban and rural counties in Georgia.An effort was made to determine the possible optimum patient