Long Waits To See Doctors In Puerto Rico, Where Medical Needs Are Great Post-Maria

Physicians have been in short supply in Puerto Rico.

By 2006 to 2016, the Amount of physicians on the island dropped from 14,000 to 9,000, in accordance with to the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Puerto Rico.

Dr. José Cruz, a nurse with a practice in Ponce, said that the island’s continuing fiscal crisis and low premiums from health insurance companies drove many doctors to seek out employment from the States.

Physicians say conducting a medical clinic is a declining firm in Puerto Rico. In San Jorge Children’s Hospital at San Juan, a nurse earning roughly $89,000 annually could double his salary by visiting the States.

The reduced salaries reflect the island’s most widespread poverty. Almost 2 in 3 kids — and half of all Puerto Ricans — rely upon Medicaid, and also the land receives much less cash from Congress to cover physicians than do low-income countries.

KHN senior correspondent Sarah Varney reports in cooperation with”PBS NewsHour” on how Puerto Rico’s exodus of physicians is incorporating a new level of caution into bringing care.

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