Maldistribution of Dermatologists Persisted in 2021
71.6 percent of 712 populated zip codes with dermatologists have fewer than four dermatologists per 100,000
By Dermsquared Editorial Team | June 14, 2023
WEDNESDAY, June 14, 2023 -- In 2021, more than 70 percent of populated zip codes with dermatologists had fewer than four dermatologists per 100,000 people, according to a brief article published in the May issue of SKIN.
Christopher N. Nguyen, M.D., from Northside Hospital Gwinnett in Lawrenceville, Georgia, and colleagues retrieved the distribution of dermatologists in three-digit zip code areas using membership data from the 2021 American Academy of Dermatology database.
The researchers found that 71.6 percent of the 712 populated zip codes with dermatologists had less than four dermatologists per 100,000 people compared with 72.3 percent in 2016 (compound annual growth rate, –0.19 percent). There was a significant difference observed in the dermatologist density of the 100 most versus least populated areas (median, 4.5 versus 1.6 dermatologists per 100,000).
"Consistent with 2016, over 70 percent of areas do not meet that target density and nearly 60 percent have less than three per 100,000. These results may indicate that initiatives aimed at redistribution of dermatologists have not made a major difference," the authors write. "This complex issue likely needs a multifaceted solution with continual effort and thought from leaders in the field."