Is Health Care Too Specialized?

A new report charges that a shortage of primary-care doctors is hurting U.S. medicine

) KNOWING WHEN TO SEE A PHYSIcian is one of the most basic ingredients in maintaining good health. But in this age of super-splintered medicine, figuring out which doctor to see has become something of a nightmare. Is there a fire in your midsection? It could be indigestion, gallstones, an exotic infection, stress, maybe even cancer. Should you consult a gastroenterologist, a tropical-disease expert, a psychiatrist or an oncologist? Once a patient climbs onto the specialist merry-go-round, it can be hard to get off. The medical bills mount, and the frustration soars.

A much better solution, most doctors agree, would be...

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