Physicians left their jobs by the hundreds of thousands in 2021: report

October 20, 2022


An estimated 333,942 healthcare providers dropped out of the workforce in 2021, many of whom departed due to retirement, burnout and other stressors related to the pandemic, according to new data.

As a profession, physicians lost the most members, with 117,000 individuals leaving their roles last year, followed by nurse practitioners, which lost 53,295 members and physician assistants, with 22,704 positions vacated, according to a report published Thursday by Definitive Healthcare.

The toll COVID-19 has taken on the country’s aging physician population is especially concerning as providers in most specialties range in age from an average of 50 to 60 years old, said Todd Bellemare, senior vice president of strategic solutions at Definitive Healthcare, a commercial intelligence company.

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