The number of orthopedists in the US is rising, but not by enough to meet demand.
According to data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are nearly 2.2 million people with orthopedical surgeries in the country, a 5% increase from last year.
The bureau projects that demand for the specialty will continue to grow.
“The number of people who have orthopedically assisted services is going to increase by about 2.5 million to 3.2 [million] over the next five years,” said Brian Lichtman, an orthopedist and president of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons.
This is largely because of the Affordable Care Act, which expanded access to health care, but also expanded insurance coverage.
And the number of doctors is on the rise.
According to the American College of Surgeons, the number with a specialty in dental surgery rose by 8% from 2016 to 2017.
Lichtmann said the rise in orthopaedics could be linked to the ACA.
“The ACA has brought in some of the top dental surgeons in the world and brought them into the US,” he said.
More than 90% of orthopodists are also trained in orthodontics, which Lichtmans said could be an indicator that there is demand for a specialty.
For some doctors, the rise is because they’re already practicing, while others are just looking for more opportunities.
Linton said he sees a lot of opportunity for his practice, as he sees people in the field.
In the meantime, Linton has found a niche that he has to make it to.
Linton is an orthodist in the Cleveland Clinic.
He said the Cleveland clinic is not always the best fit for a patient who needs more work, but it is a great fit.
“You can’t go anywhere without somebody who’s orthopedism is doing some sort of orthotic work, whether it’s the crowns, braces, and everything,” he explained.
But he said that he sees his practice as something that he can expand.
Linton said that while his practice is expanding, he still feels the need to make sure he has enough training.
“It is not just orthopedicism, but I’ve also had to make some changes with the orthodists that I work with,” he added.
And it isn’t just the orthopedias that are growing.
The average age of orthodieticians in the United States is 37, and that is expected to continue to increase.
Lichtenman said that there are people who need to move up the medical hierarchy in order to get more training.