Young physicians don't want to care for the nation's elderly

Not many medical students want to be geriatricians, or physicians who care for individuals 65 and older, according to NPR.

Out of the nation's 383 geriatric fellowship positions in 130 programs, only 192 of them were filled earlier this year. In West Virginia, which is home to the third oldest population in the U.S., the trend is highly palpable. Over the past three years at West Virginia University-Charleston, no medical school students enrolled in any of its four geriatric fellowship programs.

"The current workforce is inadequately trained and inadequately prepared to deal with what's been called the silver tsunami — a tidal wave of elderly people — increasing in the population in West Virginia, across America and across the world really," said Todd Goldberg, MD, program director for geriatric fellowship at WVU-Charleston and one of only 36 geriatricians in the state.

But this tendency isn't limited to one state. "This is not just our local program, or in West Virginia," Dr. Goldberg added, according to the report. "This is a national problem."

And it's a national problem that's not going away. According to U.S. Census data, 20 percent of Americans will be 65 or older and eligible for Medicare by 2030.

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