Are We Training Too Many Subspecialists?

Leonard Sax, MD, PhD
JAMA. 1988;259(18):2697-2698. doi:10.1001/jama.1988.03720180025024.
Text Size: A A A
Published online

To the Editor.  —Schwartz et al1 ask: Are we training too many medical subspecialists? Most of their article is devoted to demonstrating that many small cities and towns do not have their own hematologist, endocrinologist, or pulmonologist. The authors draw a startling conclusion from this unremarkable finding: they believe that there is, and will continue to be, a significant shortage of medical subspecialists. This conclusion makes sense only if you believe, as they do, that every small town needs every kind of medical subspecialist: "We believe that cities with a population over 50 000 easily warrant the presence of at least one board-certified subspecialist in each field (including rheumatology, nephrology, endocrinology, and so on)."They give two grounds for this questionable belief. First, "cities with a population of 50 000 to 125 000 have an average of... 343 occupied beds" and, second, "subspecialists in these cities will also treat


Sign In to Access Full Content

Don't have Access?

Register and get free email Table of Contents alerts, saved searches, PowerPoint downloads, CME quizzes, and more

Subscribe for full-text access to content from 1998 forward and a host of useful features

Activate your current subscription (AMA members and current subscribers)

Purchase Online Access to this article for 24 hours




Meets CME requirements for:
Browse CME for all U.S. States
Accreditation Information
The American Medical Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The AMA designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM per course. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Physicians who complete the CME course and score at least 80% correct on the quiz are eligible for AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM.
Note: You must get at least of the answers correct to pass this quiz.
You have not filled in all the answers to complete this quiz
The following questions were not answered:
Sorry, you have unsuccessfully completed this CME quiz with a score of
The following questions were not answered correctly:
Commitment to Change (optional):
Indicate what change(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.
Your quiz results:
The filled radio buttons indicate your responses. The preferred responses are highlighted
For CME Course: A Proposed Model for Initial Assessment and Management of Acute Heart Failure Syndromes
Indicate what changes(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.
Citing articles are presented as examples only. In non-demo SCM6 implementation, integration with CrossRef’s "Cited By" API will populate this tab (http://www.crossref.org/citedby.html).


Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Sign In to Access Full Content

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging & repositioning the boxes below.