The Fastest Growing Physician Demographics

Tue 25 Jul, 2023

By Mariah Taylor

The physician workforce has grown 23 percent since 2010, and women and those with DO degrees represent the fastest-growing demographics, a physician census found.

The Federation of State Medical Boards' biennial "Census of Licensed Physicians in the U.S." report, published July 18, collected information about physicians with active, full unrestricted licenses who practiced medicine in 2022. The data was assembled from state medical boards, partner organizations and HHS.

The number of women physicians has increased 54 percent since 2010, compared with 11 percent for men. The number of physicians with DO degrees, meanwhile, skyrocketed 89 percent in that time frame, compared with only 12 percent growth for physicians with MDs.

Here are eight other findings:

-In 2022, 37 percent of the physician workforce was female; it was 30 percent in 2010.

-Since 2010, the physicians workforce has increased 23 percent, with 1,044,734 licensed physicians in the U.S.

-Since 2020, there have been significant increases in new licenses issued by state medical boards thanks to the proliferation of telehealth services.

-Of physicians, 24 percent hold two or more active licenses — an increase of 23 percent from 2020.

-State medical boards issued 129,427 new licenses in 2022, up from 27 percent in 2020.

-Physicians 60 and older have increased by 54 percent since 2010.

-Eighty-five percent of licensed physicians hold one or more specialty board certifications.

-Nearly one-fourth of physicians were international medical graduates, while 77 percent graduated from a U.S. or Canadian medical school.

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