Over the last decade, there has been a shortage of doctors in the Central Valley region. California has some of the top medical schools in the nation, however, they are unable to supply enough doctors for California’s growing population. With over 12 medical schools in California and plans for opening two osteopathic medical schools opening up in Fresno in 2019-2020, experts fear an almost 5,000-doctor shortage by 2025. The only way to decrease this shortage is to open medical schools in the Central Valley and train students who are likely stay in the region.
For the last six years, there have been tentative plans circulating to add an allopathic medical school to the University of California, Merced. The campus is ready for it, but lacks initial funding.
If there were medical schools in the Central Valley, the physician shortage could subside. The state of California should allocate specific funding to UC Merced for their medical school. Bringing new doctors to Central California will improve the quality of life for its residents. Who knows the problems of Central California better than the future doctors who were raised here?
Lindsey Condra, Sanger