An Innovative Interactive Modeling Tool to Analyze Scenario-Based Physician Workforce Supply and Demand.
Effective physician workforce management requires that the various organizations comprising the House of Medicine be able to assess their current and future workforce supply. This information has direct relevance to funding of graduate medical education. We describe a dynamic modeling tool that examines how individual factors and practice variables can be used to measure and forecast the supply and demand for existing and new physician services. The system we describe, while built to analyze the pathologist workforce, is sufficiently broad and robust for use in any medical specialty. Our design provides a computer-based software model populated with data from surveys and best estimates by specialty experts about current and new activities in the scope of practice. The model describes the steps needed and data required for analysis of supply and demand. Our modeling tool allows educators and policy makers, in addition to physician specialty organizations, to assess how various factors may affect demand (and supply) of current and emerging services. Examples of factors evaluated include types of professional services (3 categories with 16 subcategories), service locations, elements related to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, new technologies, aging population, and changing roles in capitated, value-based, and team-based systems of care. The model also helps identify where physicians in a given specialty will likely need to assume new roles, develop new expertise, and become more efficient in practice to accommodate new value-based payment models.