UNMC chancellor: State faces doctor shortage

There’s long been a shortage of nurses in Nebraska, and now a top state health care official says a doctor shortage is also looming. Dr. Harold Maurer, chancellor of the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha, says health care providers are becoming scarce and it’ll soon become a crisis situation.
“The overall population is aging,” Dr. Maurer says. “People are living longer so that there are a higher number of people to take care of and there isn’t the workforce to be able to do that.” He says there’s also a growing need for younger faculty members and more space to educate future medical professionals.
“The faculty is getting older and we need to recruit young faculty but they’re not available as much as they were in the past,” Maurer says. “I think this is a big problem that’s looming.” He says more resources are necessary at the state and federal levels, because health care is not an area where the state can afford a continued drain of key professionals.
Maurer says, “We already have a massive nursing shortage in Nebraska and there’s also a shortage of physicians. Try to get a primary care physician in some of the rural areas or even in some of the bigger cities — they’re all taken. The same applies to dentistry and pharmacy.” Studies find Nebraska’s nursing shortage will jump to 20-percent by the year 2020, by which time the state will be short about 38-hundred registered nurses.

Thanks to Alisa Nelson, KLIN, Lincoln