Changes in the Medical Profession.
The medical profession transformed itself after World War IL New methods of diagnosis and treatment expanded the physician's healing powers enormously, and unprecedented social pressure was applied to assure that those new powers were exercised responsibly. Medicare and Medicaid programs initiated during the administration of President Lyndon B. Johnson routinely extended good medical care to the poor and the elderly for the first time in history, and it cost more than even the most conservative planners imagined. Between 1950 and 1970 the medical workforce tripled to 3.9 million people, and national health-care expenditures increased sixfold to $71.6 billion per year.
Innovations in obstetrics, vascular surgery, neurosurgery, transplant surgery, and other medical fields made headlines, but the ability of physicians to perform new procedures did not mean they were available, because physicans' time was limited, and complicated medical procedures took time and money. New techniques, drugs, and instruments required that physicians modify their practices. House calls, common in the years before World War II, became rare as routine diagnoses required medical tools that were not portable, and the doctor's office—or the hospital—became the place to treat illness. The influx of patients...
(The entire section is 1247 words.)
Want to Read More?
Subscribe now to read the rest of 1960's Medicine and Health Summary. Plus get complete access to 30,000+ study guides!